Old bikes given new lease of life

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WHEN Invercargill Idea Services staff appealed for bikes last month they were amazed at the massive response.
About 140 bikes of all ages, sizes and conditions — plus a few push scooters — were donated from residents throughout the city and rural Southland.
‘‘We weren’t expecting that many. It’s been great,’’ bike project coordinator Daniel Goss said.
‘‘Many people said they had had a bike or bikes in their sheds for years and hadn’t used them so we might as well have them and put them to good use. That was a familiar story.’’
On Tuesdays, and this year on Thursdays as well, ‘‘bike doctor’’ Tony Tresidder, staff and volunteers teach bike team members with intellectual disabilities how to repair and restore unwanted bikes so they can be donated back to individuals and organisations.
Mr Goss said the donated bikes were collected by members of Idea Services’ mobile work crew, who had enjoyed going to new places.
‘‘They picked up 17 from a scrap metal dealer in Riverton one day.’’
The bikes had been assessed, and while some had been junked, most were suitable for restoration, he said.
Later this year 20 would be handed over to Fernworth School to be donated to pupils with a need, and the same might happen at Tisbury School.
More bikes could be accepted, Mr Goss said.
‘‘We can take more, but it’s my job to find somewhere to keep them.’’
Í To donate a bike phone Daniel, 03 211 2980. Pick-up can be arranged.
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