Following the government naming bicycles (and bicycle shops) as integral to the running of the UK during the coronavirus lockdown, Beryl Bikes has announced it will make its bike share service in Bournemouth and Poole free to all NHS staff for the duration of the pandemic.
Alongside BCP council, the bike share operator will make the bikes free for NHS workers signing up to the Beryl app with their NHS email address, which will automatically provide them with free use for all bay to bay rides in the Bournemouth and Poole service area.
Beryl is offering a direct loan scheme for key workers in London and is working with local councils in the other areas it operates – Norwich, Hereford, Watford, London, Bournemouth and Poole – to allow complimentary rides for key workers.
Phil Ellis, CEO of Beryl said: “As the COVID-19 crisis develops in the UK, we’re aware that many people won’t be able to stay home as they’ll be working to protect and aid the general public. We want to ensure these individuals can still be mobile and maintain safe distances from others while travelling to and from their places of work. As such, we’ve taken the decision to make Beryl Bikes temporarily free for NHS staff in our operating areas, to help them get around and to say thanks for the important work they’re doing.”
”We know the difference a little bit more sun and exercise can make in each of our lives right now, and hope we can make these important journeys, both as safe and as enjoyable as possible.”
Councillor Andy Hadley, Cabinet Member for Transport and Infrastructure at BCP Council, said, “We’re pleased to support this initiative which will give our colleagues in the NHS a free and flexible transport option. This will help to ensure they can continue to deliver an essential and effective service across Bournemouth and Poole.’’
To access free rides, NHS workers simply need to sign up to the app with a valid NHS email address. This will provide free use of the bikes for all trips ending in a Beryl Bays within a 60 minute ride duration.