Some of the 10 new bikes available for hire
Councillors and partners gathered at the Active Travel Hub at Ayr Rail Station to mark the launch of ScotRail's latest Bike&Go cycle hire scheme.
The new bike rental facility means that when the hub is open, locals and visitors will be able to hire a bike from as little as £3.80 for 24 hours, encouraging even more people to get fit and stay active. Membership of Bike&Go also means access to 11 other bike hire sites in Scotland including Glasgow and Kilmarnock and over 70 sites in the rest of the UK.
The Hub which was opened by South Ayrshire Council earlier this year is the ideal location for bike hire as not only is it right outside the station, but the Hub is already supporting and promoting the benefits of active and sustainable travel.
Hiring a bike at the Hub is a simple process and begins with registering on-line with the Bike&Go scheme which costs £10 a year. The membership card can then be scanned at the Hub to get access to a bike for up to 72 hours per booking. The scheme allows a member to hire two bikes at once, so you can even go cycling with a friend.
At present the bikes can only be hired during the Hub opening hours however the bikes can be returned at any point during the 72 hour period as keys can be placed in a secure dropbox if the hub is closed.
There are also facilities nearby where other bikes can be secured and Active Travel Hub staff are available to offer free advice on anything from local routes and transport options through to tips on places to visit.
This will be the first Bike&Go scheme in Scotland to be managed by an Active Travel Hub, as all the rest are managed by ScotRail.
David Lister, the ScotRail Alliance's safety and sustainability assurance director, said: "We're committed to making sustainable integrated travel options as easy as possible. Bike&Go is just one of the ways we are doing this – it's a fantastic way for customers to complete their onward journey by bicycle. The easy-to-use bikes are ideal for business travellers and day-trippers alike.
"Ayr Active Travel Hub is a fantastic resource for the whole community, and I am delighted that we are able to launch Bike&GO here."
Councillor Ian Cochrane, Sustainability and Environment Portfolio Holder for South Ayrshire Council said: "Our main objective is to promote sustainable forms of travel such as cycling and walking across South Ayrshire and the Bike&Go scheme will help us achieve this ambition.
"Ayrshire has an extensive network of paths and I hope visitors use the bikes to take in some of our breath-taking scenery. The bikes are also a great way for locals to get back into cycling without forking out for a new bike straight away. The health and environmental advantages of cycling are clear, so I hope people use the bikes as another way to get active and stay active"
Sustrans Scotland Smarter Choices Coordinator, Communities, Megan Somerville, said: "We are really pleased to help in the delivery of the Bike&Go scheme at the Hub.
"Having Bike&Go will help to encourage local residents, employees, students and visitors to the area to travel by foot or by bike for more of the journeys they make every day – a key aim of the Ayr Active Travel Hub."
For more details on the Bike & Go scheme, visit www.bikeandgo.co.uk or contact the Hub firstname.lastname@example.org
The Active Travel Hub at Ayr Rail Station is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday 10:00am – 1:00pm and from 1:00pm – 4:00pm on a Tuesday and Thursday.