27 Nov 2020
Penarth gets Wales’ first electric bike sharing scheme
VISITORS to Penarth station can now benefit from Wales’ first electric bike sharing scheme.
Transport for Wales and Network Rail joined forces with the Vale of Glamorgan Council to deliver the nextbike scheme outside the station.
Ten e-bike docking and charging points have been installed on the station land, meaning customers can hop straight off the train and explore the beautiful seaside town through low cost, energy efficient and emission-free transport.
Funded by the Vale of Glamorgan Council through Section 106 sustainable transport contributions, the scheme follows the successful introduction of pedal bike share schemes in Cardiff and Swansea.
Transport for Wales manage the station and Customer Integration Manager Jay Bryce said the scheme fitted in with the company’s ambition of making public transport greener and more sustainable.
He said: “Bike share schemes are a fantastic way of encouraging people to be more active and make greener choices when traveling. Electric bikes come with all the health benefits, while making it much easier to gain momentum and travel up hills.
“Having one of Wales’ first e-bike share points at Penarth really does endorse our commitment to making stations the gateways to the communities we serve. We’re investing significantly in our stations over the next few years and working in partnership with local councils and Network Rail will really see them become local assets, rather than just somewhere you board a train.”
With a picturesque seafront, well-kept parks and a high street boasting a mix of national and independent shops, Penarth is a fantastic place to spend a day, with the station ideally positioned to explore the area.
The Vale of Glamorgan council are expecting to roll out additional e-bike points around the county in partnership with nextbike over the coming months.
Customers can download an easy to use app from nextbike allowing them to rent the cycle. They can then use the cycle for as long as they want before returning to any compatible nextbike docking station.
COVID-19 saw a significant increase in the number of people walking and cycling and it is hoped the introduction of e-bikes will only further encourage the use of sustainable transport.
Network Rail, who own the land the station sits on, say the scheme also fits into their long-term strategy for building a sustainable rail network across Britain.
Aled Huxtable, Business Development Manager for Network Rail in Wales said: “This is welcome investment at Penarth station for our passengers. With our stakeholders, we are aiming to make stations an integral part of each community, and this will do just that; by improving the facilities available to the community and promoting sustainable ways in which people can travel to and from the station will make Penarth a greener and more enjoyable place to visit.”
The Vale of Glamorgan council are working with Cardiff City council to create a seamless system that will link the two schemes. This will soon allow users to travel between and return bikes to both locations.
Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood Services and Transport, Cllr Peter King said:
“Having declared a climate emergency earlier this year, it is imperative as a Council we continue to support active and sustainable methods of transport. The bikes are simple to use and tariffs tend to be cheaper than travelling by car, bus or train.
“The initiative will benefit the health and wellbeing of our commuters and residents, as well as being an asset to tourism in the area. If this proves to be a success, we hope to see the scheme expand further.”