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Islington Tribune - by ROISIN GADELRAB
Published: 4 September 2009

PCSOs Bernie Hayde and Mo Akhtar with project manager Archie Morrell, youth worker Veslie Collins and Cape Youth Project youngsters
Bikes gift keeps project on track

Police support officer talks Network Rail into handing over abandoned cycles

A YOUTH bike project has been saved thanks to the perseverance of a police community support officer.
When Hillrise PCSO Bernie Hayde heard that the Cape Youth Project in Crouch Hill, Stroud Green, was running out of bikes he set to work. The project teaches youngsters to build their own bicycles.
He has now convinced Network Rail to donate 25 bikes – abandoned at King’s Cross station – to Cape Youth.
PCSO Hayde’s efforts have been so successful that the project is appealing to readers of the Tribune to donate any unwanted bikes to the workshop.
He said: “They get kids to work on bikes and give them awards. They get to keep the bikes they work on. It’s a really good project. The kids really go for it. Some of them come from poor areas and can’t afford to buy their own bike.”
He had heard that Network Rail might have bikes left abandoned at King’s Cross so spoke to duty manager Mark McKevitt, who put warning notices on the cycles saying that if they were not claimed they would be donated to charity.
Staff from Islington Council’s environment department helped transport to the project 25 bikes that remained unclaimed. They were donated at a barbecue celebration on Friday.
Cape Youth Project manager Archie Morrell said: “The bike donation and the ongoing work by Hillrise team – in particular PCSO Hayde – has been great.
“The bikes will make a lot of young people very happy. Any who participate in making one roadworthy will get to keep the bike and receive an accredited award.”
PCSO Hayde’s idea has prompted Network Rail to introduce a policy that unclaimed bikes should go to charity.
Anyone wishing to donate a bicycle to the Cape Youth Project can call Mr Morrell on 020 7272 4243.

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