Sustainable Friends – News column February 2021

My Beryl Bike experience – promoting little ways in Watford that can help reduce climate change, by Irena Pearse

I have been making myself refocus from doom and gloom Climate Change scenarios and have decided to notice positive changes that are happening .  And one of those that made my heart skip was the introduction of Beryl Bikes to Watford. Beryl Bikes are named after the great amateur cyclist Beryl Burton. I am a keen cyclist and have my own bike but I’ve been also very curious for a while to see how these equivalent to Boris-bikes worked, so when a friend came to visit who was up for a cycle ride, he was easily persuaded to download the app, enter his bank details and opt for one of the Minute Bundles: £20 pay-as-you-go that could be spent over the course of a year.

The app shows where bikes are available, you walk over to the spot, scan the bike code and the bike unlocks. 

The bike rides really well for a 3-gear sit up and beg, it seemed solid but not overly heavy and – on tarmac – picks up speed easily. We cycled down to Cassiobury Park and had lots of people asking us questions who were really interested in the bikes.  (This was in June).

So, not only did I feel we were getting exercise and supporting a more environmentally-friendly form of public transport, we were connecting with local people. 

So well done Watford for introducing the Beryl Bikes!  Now, we just need affordable electric car-shares. 

To see what Watford Council have promised towards 2030 go to: sustainable-hertfordshire-strategy-2020.pdf

And here is our local Friends of the Earth contact if you are interested in being more involved or just finding out more: Watford and Three Rivers FoE: anna@aphsherts.co.uk

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