Raleigh have partnered with their home city of Nottingham to produce a fleet of e-cargo bikes and trikes, made possible thanks to a £50,000 government funding boost. After the council's successful bid to the Energy Saving Trust for the grant, the e-cargo machines will be used by the council themselves and distributed to small businesses and the council's project delivery partners.
The bikes and trikes are specifically designed for transporting bulky items around the city, and all have a large compartment at the front with a powerful mid-motor. There are 15 bikes in the initial fleet, comprising of 12 two-wheeled bikes and three trikes. Nottingham City Council say their internal fleet will be used by the authority to replace journeys around the city and in parks currently done by petrol or diesel vehicles, while their local project partners such as Nottingham's two universities, Sustrans and Ridewise will also get bikes by the end of the year. The Workplace Travel Service (WTS) will also be allocating bikes to local businesses on a try-before-you-buy basis, with the option to buy the bikes long-term after the trial period.
Nottingham City Council say the e-cargo bikes provide "a cost-efficient, zero-emission way to transport cargo", while being easier to manoeuvre and park and providing consistent journey times; not to mention the health benefits for the riders.
Councillor Adele Williams commented: “We know that e-cargo bikes have been very popular in other major European cities and we hope they will prove so in Nottingham – we have set out to enable a clean freight system as part of our Carbon Neutral action plan. Securing the funding for these bikes demonstrates our commitment to achieving this.
“Now is an ideal time to launch a cargo bike scheme within Nottingham. The ultimate aim of the project will be to visibly establish e-cargo cycles the city as a cost-effective and efficient transport option. They are an excellent way for people to move freight around quickly and environmentally. We look forward to adding some to our own fleet for council officers to use.”
Raleigh's brand manager Adam Snow said: “Raleigh are proud to be partnering with Nottingham City Council to deliver a fleet of e-cargo bikes.
“As a company still based in our home city of Nottingham, we can’t think of a more appropriate partnership. Our fleet of e-cargo bikes will aid in achieving ambitious green targets for the city set by the local authority."
The Energy Saving Trust has already been instrumental in distributing additional funding for e-bikes across the UK - back in January, the Scottish government made an extra £700,000 available to fund an interest-free loan scheme for the purchase of e-bikes, managed by the Energy Saving Trust. Today, the All Party Parliamentary Group for Cycling and Walking published a full list of cities in England who are getting e-cargo bike grants, with 18 in total.
Here is the full list of the 18 local authorities who are getting e-cargo bike grants.— APPGCW (@allpartycycling) May 21, 2020
Which of these councils have not made public their emergency cycling and walking schemes yet? pic.twitter.com/w0JdW4Debx