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Letter: The Bike Project Remains in a Financially Parlous State

Published on: 16 Mar, 2022
Updated on: 16 Mar, 2022

From: A J Ferenczy

Bike Project director

I am the Director of Bike Project Surrey. To put the record straight, whilst Council Leader Bigmore, as he asserts, said funding was available to support a move, we met with his officials the following week, and were told that there was, in fact, none available. This remains the case. And while the premises in Merrow were highly suitable, it would have been at a full commercial rent of over £30k per annum all-in; utterly unaffordable for a small, unfunded, charity.

No grant application has been made to LoCASE. The only funding available was for a maximum of £10K as 25 per cent of the cost of the purchase of an electric vehicle; again, utterly beyond the scope of our charity’s extremely limited means.

We applied to SCC’s “Your Fund Surrey” but were rejected at stage 1 as we now have no permanent home, and funding toward the costs of such is excluded.

We are appreciative of our home of over seven years in the previously unused Borough Engineer’s Workshop at the Woking Road Depot as this has hugely defrayed the costs of running the Project. Given that we are unfunded, not receiving a single penny for the daily care and training of our learners, including those referred by Social Services, we remain in a financially parlous state. If we do not find affordable premises, we will close.

Those who will suffer, in addition to the local population relieved of affordable bike sales and servicing, will be our disabled and other vulnerable learners, and charity partners with whom we work to support these elements of society neglected by the state. And this in a town that has declared a climate emergency, and wishes to achieve city status.

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