The University of Portsmouth is leading a crowdfunding appeal to bring a Santander bike hiring scheme to Portsmouth by Easter 2018.
The University is competing alongside other universities for the chance to provide 50 high-quality Santander bikes for the City. It needs to raise more than the £61,573 target by Friday 8th December to win, with nearly half the initial target already pledged.
If successful, Santander will provide £100,000 to fund 50 brand-new bikes, plus docking stations around the University, Southsea and the seafront. You’ll be able to pay for your bike via a smartphone app.
Flexible cycle schemes offer a convenient way to get around a city. In London, the Santander scheme has more than 11,000 bikes and 70 docking stations across the capital.
Using bikes for short trips helps reduce congestion and improve air quality, and allows people to enjoy a healthier lifestyle. The bikes themselves are comfortable, reliable and easy to ride. They will be looked after by a local social enterprise, creating new opportunities for young people in Portsmouth.
Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth, said: “This exciting scheme will make Portsmouth a showcase in the South for encouraging active, environmentally-friendly travel. It will also be good for the economic life of the City by boosting trade for local shops and businesses, as well as helping young people learn new skills.”
Matt Hutnell, Santander Universities said: “Santander is committed to supporting both higher education and local communities across the UK. We believe that a cycle scheme, such as this one, could bring significant local benefits to the winning institutions.
We saw an extremely high standard of entries from many universities, so it was quite a challenge for the judging panel to select the finalists. The level of interest has indicated the enthusiasm for cycle schemes and we hope that whoever wins will be able to make a big difference to life on campus.”
To help the University bring the scheme to Portsmouth, you can make a Pledge2pedal at www.crowdfunder.co.uk/uopcycles where there is also further information on the bikes and how you’ll be able to use them.
Every pledge made counts, however small. The University has devised some great reward packages, so that while pledging their support people can get 50 per cent off their membership. Membership also entitles you to half price travel in the scheme.
You can support the campaign on Twitter using the hashtag #Pedals4Pompey.
All pledges will be refunded if Portsmouth fails to win the scheme.