Nick Brown, CEO of havebike, has written a letter to Gilian Keegan MP, Minister of State for Apprenticeships and Skills, calling for bicycle mechanic qualifications to be included in the list of free level 3 adult qualifications.
In May this year the UK Government set out their plans for skills and lifetime education where 400 free courses were made available to adults without a full qualification at Level 3, ranging from engineering to healthcare to conservation, backed by government funding. Despite the Government’s ambitious commitment to cycling in recent months, bicycle mechanic qualifications were not included in the list.
Brown’s letter outlined the ongoing delays that many bike shops are experiencing as well as concerns around shortages of qualified bicycle mechanics.
The letter stated: ‘’If we are to realise the ambitious levels of cycling that the Government is aiming for, we need a significant increase in the number of mechanics, to ensure that the bikes people are riding are safe and roadworthy. With the number of people cycling continuing to increase, and many bike shops continuing to experience long delays for repairs and servicing, investing in these qualifications is essential for the future.’’
As the number of people taking up cycling continues to grow, the havebike CEO believes that investing in mechanic qualifications is essential. He said: “Like many people in the cycling industry, I have been impressed by the Government’s commitment to cycling, as laid out in Gear Change.
‘’However, if we are to truly realise the many benefits of large-scale take up of travelling by bike, we need to make sure that there are enough qualified mechanics in place to keep everyone’s bikes in a safe condition.
‘’I’m calling for bicycle mechanic qualifications to be included in the list of level 3 qualifications available for free to eligible adults, to make sure we are investing in the future.’’