Boost for businesses for active travel 

Several companies across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole have benefited from a share of a £55,000 funding pot aimed at supporting them to improve sustainable and active travel facilities for their employees.

Funded through the governments Transforming Cities Fund, these ‘Trip End Facilities’ grants have enabled local businesses to install everything from bike racks, shelters and showers to lockers and security lighting on their respective sites.

Firms across the region were invited to apply for the grants, with £500 to £20,000 available to spend on the active travel facilities they think their employees would benefit most from. 

A total of five local companies were successful with their grant application to provide facilities which will not only encourage their employees to explore more environmentally friendly, active ways to travel into work but make it much easier and safer for them to do so.

The Hamworthy-based Adam Practice, one of the largest GP surgeries on the south coast, now boasts a brand-new cycle shelter with CCTV equipment, as well as D-locks for added security.

Technology and mobility specialists, April Six, located in Christchurch, also has a new shelter, as well as a facility where staff can dry wet clothes should they encounter wet weather on their way to work and a bike maintenance stand equipped with tools and pumps.

Staff working at Beryl in Boscombe can now utilise lockers and a drying room, with plumbing and electrics installed so they can shower.

Bournemouth University has installed new modern cycle racks which also cater for those with cargo and adapted bikes, equipped with electric charging points too. 

While the Pause Cat Café in Bournemouth is also providing its workforce and volunteers with shelters, lockers and drying facilities so they can store their bikes safely and get ready for shifts on site.

Jaya Da Costa, founder of Pause Cat Café, said: “Our recent survey has already shown a 25% rise in cycling and walking since our facilities have been installed.

“We are so grateful for BCP Council’s help in making a tangible difference for our team, giving us the resources we need to protect our planet.

“Pause is committed to prioritising kindness to the environment and this grant enables us to do just that!”

Councillor Andy Hadley, Portfolio Holder for Climate Response, Environment and Energy at BCP Council, said: “It’s great to see local businesses investing in workplace facilities that will encourage and enable their staff to walk, run, cycle and scoot to work. 

“The benefits of active travel commutes are wide, from helping the workforce stay fit, healthy and productive to fewer cars on the road and less air pollution. 

“I hope this will prompt more businesses to talk with their staff about the measures they could take, such as installing secure parking and lockers, and encourage them to switch to active, eco-friendly travel commutes.”

There has also been wider recognition for three of the businesses taking part in the scheme, with The Adam Practice, Beryl, and April Six awarded ‘Gold Cycle-Friendly Employer’ by charity Cycling UK. 

The accolade is given based on employers’ cycle-friendly culture, infrastructure and policies, with a priority on putting staff and the environment first.