Wanstead shopkeepers sign up to biking scheme to help business and the environment

A shopping scheme which has been launched in Wanstead aims to encourage greener travel while increasing custom for businesses.

Fourteen shops in Wanstead High Street, Cambridge Park and Woodbine Place have signed up to the biking borough scheme which rewards cyclists.

People who cycle to one of the participating shops, which include Images in Frames and The Orange Tree in the High Street, and make a purchase will receive a point.

Loyalty card holders who get to 20 points will then receive a free bicycle pannier to help them carry their shopping.

The scheme is run by sustainable transport charity Sustrans with Redbridge Council and is funded by Transport for London.

Michele Redgrave, of Images in Frames, said: “Hopefully it will bring in footfall and people might see something they like.

“It’s about bringing people into the street and getting people back on bikes and easing up congestion.”

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Redbridge’s biking borough project provides skills and support to people wanting to make more local journeys by bike.

And Sustrans wants to see four out of five journeys of under five miles made on foot, by bike or public transport by 2020.

Emilie Charlesworth, the charity’s cycling promotion officer for Wanstead who established the scheme, said: “Cycling to the shops is quick, easy and cheap, and good for the environment.”

It met with enthusiasm from participating shopkeepers as they began to reward customers today.

Rachel Root, owner of The Orange Tree and chairman of the Wanstead Business Partnership, said: “I’m all for preserving the High Street’s village feel and promoting local, independent shops.”

Dill Puneet, of The Art Shop in High Street, said: “I think it’s a good scheme to encourage people to go green.”

Loyalty cards will be available from participating shops and the monthly biking borough stall at Wanstead farmer’s market.

Visit www.bikingboroughshops.wordpress.com for the full list of shops.

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