Wheels to Work is an initiative currently running in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and has recently launched in County Durham. It's designed for areas where public transport or transport links are lacking, or where transport issues might be stopping you getting to work - or even training and college. It's absolutely perfect for those who don't own a car, and can't depend on public transport.
The Wheels to Work scheme is offering eligible candidates competitive moped and bicycle loans. The fund covers almost all of the costs involved in getting you started on the road, including all necessary training. For wannabee cyclists, they offer new pedal bikes, reconditioned pedal bikes and even electrical bikes - you can loan or buy your bike with their financial assistance, whatever works best for you.
For the moped loans, Wheels to Work cover the cost of road tax, insurance, breakdown assistance, services and maintenance costs, as well as the essential safety clothing. You'll also receive vouchers to complete your CBT training for free. After you've passed your CBT, you'll get a six month loan on a SYM or Honda moped, between 50cc and 125cc. All you have to pay is petrol and a weekly payment of no more than £30. There's even a way you can purchase the moped after the initial loan.
There is some criteria that you have to meet to be eligible for this support. Obviously, you need to live in one of the areas where the scheme is running. You also have to be able to demonstrate that there is no 'easy' public transport option for your journey. This would usually be due to poor connections from your home to your place of work or college, or out-of-hour work patterns. If your commute involves two buses or more, there's a good chance you'll be eligible.
In addition, you'll also need to have a firm offer of employment, training course or a place at college - and you'll need to be able to produce written proof of this. If you're already in work, training or college but are struggling with the commute, you could still be eligible. You've also got to be over the age of 16, and if you're under 18 you'll need your parents' or guardian's consent to join Wheels to Work.
If you think you might be eligible for assistance, go to the Wheels to Work website to find out more or apply online. If you're looking for a transport scheme in your area, try the Cycle to Work scheme