Cycle hire scheme just weeks away

Bike stands, like these i Wolverhampton, are being installed in the Black Country.

Bike stands are being installed in and around Stourbridge town centre ahead of a new cycle hire scheme being introduced in the borough later this month.

The West Midlands Cycle Hire scheme is already up and running in areas across the region including Wolverhampton and Coventry and is due to be rolled out in Stourbridge.

Distinctive grey and green bikes will be available in and around the town with docking stations at key sites including Stourbridge Bus Station, near The Bonded Warehouse and in the town centre. The bikes can be hired using the Beryl Cycle Hire app, which will include Covid safety advice.

Later this year, they will also be available via the new Swift App. This will be the first app for the West Midlands to offer ticket purchases, the Swift Collector, departure information, journey planning, car hire and more, all in one place. It costs £1 to unlock a bike and 5p per minute after that - this means a 20-minute cycle will cost £2 and an hour £4. Balvinder Heran, deputy chief executive at Dudley Council, said:

"This is a great scheme to encourage people to be more active in their local communities as well as giving people an alternative option to using the car and therefore reducing car journeys and local levels of pollution.

"We’ve spoken to local people about how the scheme will be rolled out in Stourbridge and if successful we hope to roll this out in other areas across the borough."

The cycle hire scheme has been delivered by Transport for West Midlands to encourage more people to become active and healthy and offer a convenient and more environmentally-friendly alternative to the car for shorter journeys. When fully rolled-out later this year, there will be 170 fixed docking stations and 1,500 bikes for hire across the region - of which 150 will be powered e-bikes.

The pedal cycles have three gears to cope with hilly parts of the region and are fitted with high quality laser safety lights.

The five-year contract with Serco, the operator of London’s successful Santander Cycle Hire scheme, offers the opportunity for more docks and bikes to be provided as demand increases. The bikes are made by Pashley’s in Stratford-upon Avon and the docking stations and locks are also manufactured in the West Midlands.


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