An exciting new initiative that will help elderly residents get out and about on purpose-built bikes is set to be launched.

The Organic Growers of Fairlie are behind the plans to buy three trishaws – light three-wheeled vehicles – that will allow residents to leave their care homes and go on free bike rides.

They will receive £22,800 from North Ayrshire Council’s pioneering Community Investment Fund to help finance the project.

They hope to run the initiative in Fairlie, Largs and Millport. They group have linked up with international organisation Cycling Without Age (CWA) to set up an affiliate group – Cycling Without Age (Fairlie) – which will allow them to tap into their expertise and resources.

CWA (Fairlie) have already recruited 20 pilots interested in volunteering their time to take people out.

Councillor Louise McPhater, Cabinet Member for Communities, said: “This is a wonderful idea that will have huge health benefits to the people that take part.

“Not only will it enhance their well-being but it will also tackle issues like social isolation. There is also scope for young people to get involved which will also be a fantastic volunteering opportunity that also gives them the chance to get to know people of a different generation. It’s just such a great initiative for so many reasons.

“The Community Investment Fund is a radical step for the Council. Devolving these funds to the Locality Partnerships, empowering them to invest money in their identified local priorities, is a first not only for us in North Ayrshire but for any local authority in Scotland. As a Council we were delighted to approve this funding request. It is exactly the sort of project the Community Investment Fund was set up to promote.”


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