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I Love My Bike
LMC's Fabrication and Welding students have been involved with a recent “I love my bike” safety awareness campaign.
The students were approached by the local police to help with the project, which involved welding metal plates to a selection of bike frames. FOllwing completion of the metal work the initial bikes were sprayed and decorated to make them highly visible, and be situated around the local area in the town centres, Lancaster & Morecambe College, Lancaster University and University of Cumbria, displaying various awareness raising messages.
The initiative forms part of Operation Derailleur, which PC Arundale and PC Cornthawaite have devised and are currently running in the Lancaster and Morecambe area. Initially plans have been put in place for six bikes to be utilised around the area, and possibly more at a later date. These bikes have been decommissioned from the Police lost and found property store, some having been there for up to eight years. The project will run indefinitely and different messages will be displayed over time on each bike with the focus on bike security.
“We came up with the idea last year following a massive spike in cycle theft in the Lancaster and Morecambe area. We had over £400,000 of bicycles stolen in twelve months, so PC Arundale and I decided to do something about it. As part of our daily role on the Lancaster Neighbourhood Policing Team we cycle everyday instead of driving, we do a lot of work regarding cycle coding, safety and security and utilise the Lancaster Area Police Facebook page to raise awareness as to what we do. We use the hashtag and pseudonym "bikebobbies" to engage with people and this project was a good way to communicate our message to the public,” said PC Cornthwaite regarding the project.
LMC Welding Tutor Louise Boardly said ““The welding students thought that this was a fantastic opportunity, not only to get involved with a community projects, but also to showcase the skills that they have acquired whilst studying Welding and Fabrication at College”
Deputy Programme Area Manager for Construction and Engineering Ryann Williams said: The students spent their lunchtimes and break times welding and fabricating the signage onto the bikes. They really enjoyed the challenge for two reasons; the first being that they learnt to weld painted tubular bike frame without distorting the shape (which they never normally get to do) so they gained the skills to repair parts of their own bike if needed. The second reason was that they felt like they put something back into the community and helped in the fight against bike theft/security which has directly affected some of the students. Being 16 and having your bike stolen is a hugely upsetting ordeal; not only do you lose a possession but you lose your freedom and sometimes your only mode of transport."
LMC Fabrication and Welding students with tutor Louise Boardly and PCs Arundale and Cornthwaite with one of the ‘lock it or lose it’ bikes
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