By: David Carry

Posted: Mon, 05/01/2015 - 12:14

We know it's 2015 already! But 2013-2014 was a huge year for us doubling the number of bicycles collected over the previous year. We shipped 7,103 bikes, reaching 42,618 people, providing swift transport, access to health, education and income for those in disadvantaged African communities. So we spent some extra time on our Annual Report - submitted a few months back.

Why not start the New Year by reviewing what we have achieved with your help.

Download recycle_annual_report_2013op.pdf (6.19 MB)

Re~Cycle Annual Report & Accounts 2013

By: Derek Balcombe

Posted: Tue, 23/12/2014 - 16:35

We wish all of our friends, supporters, donors and volunteers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. If you haven't already done so, please sign up to our newsletter and receive regular news of what we are up to.

The office and warehouse at Colchester is closed over Christmas from Wednesday 24th December - back open as usual on Monday 5th January.

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Fri, 21/11/2014 - 16:27

Re~Cycle Bike Sale

Roughly 1-2% of the bikes donated to Re~Cycle are either unsuitable for Africa (such as thin framed racing bikes) or are bikes with disc brakes which are parts that are not readily available in Africa and thus less likely to be usable. Instead of recycling these bikes we sell them at the local University of Essex and our warehouse in Colchester, generating a sustainable income to help cover our running costs. These bikes are sold at affordable prices starting at £65 and many of these bikes are sold to students or people just starting out as cyclists and therefore looking for a good bargain.

On Saturday the 6th of December, Re~Cycle will be holding a one-off bike sale, with a choice of new and refurbished Specialized, Pashley, Boardman, Raleigh and Carerra bikes. We will be operating on a first come first served basis and will not be taking reservations, so please come down early if you want to grab yourself a bargain. 

Cash or card payments accepted.

Opening hours: 09:00-13:00


Unit 8 The Grove Estate
Colchester Road

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Wed, 12/11/2014 - 18:11

Re~Cycle Bike Competition

This year Re~Cycle has shipped 9,769 bikes to Africa. To celebrate, we've teamed up with our corporate partners Halfords, to offer one lucky winner a bike of their choice worth £500! To enter click here:

Competition ends: 31/01/2015

Official Rules:

  1. This competition is run by Re~Cycle (UK registered charity, registration number 1063570). It commences on 14th November 2014 at 12:00 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and ends on the 31st January 2015 at 23:59 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
  2. This promotion is open to all residents of UK and Ireland. Employees, agents and/or representatives of Re~Cycle, and any entity involved in the development, production, implementation, administration, judging or fulfilment of the competition, and the immediate family members and/or those persons living in the same household of such individuals (whether related or not), are not eligible to participate or win a prize in this contest. For the purpose of this competition, immediate family is defined as spouse, partner, mother, father, legal guardian, in-laws, grandmother, grandfather, brother, sister, children and grandchildren.
  3. Employees, agents and/or representatives of Re~Cycle may enter submissions but will not be eligible to win a prize in this contest
  4. Entrants must be at least 16 years of age. Entrants under the age of 18 must seek adult approval (aged 18 +).
  5. Prize: Choose a bike from Halfords for under £500 and make up the difference in accessories etc or Choose a bike for over £500 and pay the difference. Prize must be collected at your closest Halfords branch.
  6. The winners will be selected at random and will be at the judge's discretion.
  7. Judges decisions are final and Re~Cycle will not participate in communications referencing the judge's decisions. Re~Cycle will not enter into any correspondence regarding award of the prizes.
  8. No purchase is necessary.
  9. No cash or alternative prize will be available.
  10. The prize(s) are non-transferable.
  11. Re~Cycle reserves the right to change the prize(s) advertised at any given time.
  12. All entrants must provide their first and last name and valid email address.
  13. Winners will be announced and notified via Facebook and email. Should the winners not respond within 48 hours of this communication then Re~Cycle reserves the right to arrange a redraw to select a new winner
  14. Entrants will receive emails with products and services from Re~Cycle, which we believe would be of interest to them.
  15. No cash alternative is available and Re~Cycle reserves the right to substitute a prize of equivalent or greater value if for reasons beyond its control the prize is not available. The Sponsor's decision on the alternative prize is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  16. Entrants can unsubscribe from further email communication at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email.
  17. The name of the winner may be featured on the Re~Cycle and Halfords website and also on a small amount of press materials that may appear in both online and offline media. By participating, winners must consent to the use of their name in further publicity.

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Wed, 12/11/2014 - 16:13

Kaloko Trust Zambia

Established in 1995, the Kaloko Trust is a UK-based charity, which works to relieve poverty and raise livelihoods in rural communities in Zambia, southern Africa. Re~Cycle has been working with the Kaloko Trust from some time now, but it wasn’t until 2009 that we shipped out first full container of bikes to a new bike project, supported by The Kaloko Trust.

Five years on and we’ve shipped nearly 3000 bicycles out to Zambia! With such a large number of quality bikes now in circulation, there is a great need for spare parts and people to repair them. The Kaloko trust has established two fully operational bike shops in the Luansobe area of Zambia.

Spare parts play an incredibly important role in keeping these bicycle shops sustainable, allowing the Kaloko trust to pay the mechanics that assemble and prepare the bikes prior to their sale. This is all part of what we call the revolving fund, providing the means for bicycle shops to operate at low cost while providing transport options for the local community at a fraction of their market value.

Bike tools
Bike tools are hard to come by in Zambia, with a hammer and screwdriver being used for most jobs. Using such tools is incredibly time consuming compared to using a specific bike tool, and often leads to damaged parts, especially when removing the freewheel (rear cogs) from a back wheel.

hammer and nail bike tool

Many full time mechanics use a hammer and nail instead of a “chain tool” again leading to damage and wasted time. Following a visit to Luansobe from one of our master mechanics Richard Evans, we sent out specialised tool kits, which were given to two groups of mechanics.

The Kaloko Trust’s director Dr Lewis Jere recently retired after leading the trust for 10 years. We are very sorry to see him go, but he’s been replaced with someone who has a lot of experience with Kaloko! Mr Willard Chitimbo is now the new Zambia director. He's had experience in a host of NGO roles and has made a strong start with Kaloko. We look forward to working with Willard and sending them even more bikes in the years to come!

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Mon, 27/10/2014 - 18:17

Claygate bike collection

Ian Trought from Claygate has taken it upon himself to collect old bikes on Behalf of Re~Cycle! Ian has booked the Claygate Village Hall car park in Church Lane on the mornings of Saturday 8th and 15th of November, for people to donate their old bikes. He is hoping someone will be able to offer a location to store the bikes for a few days, before he hires a vehicle to take them to Re-Cycle HQ in Colchester.

“I was motivated to arrange a collection when I saw the details of your charity in a Halfords earlier this year. I researched your charity and was inspired by the difference that a bike can make in Africa. I strongly believe that we should re-use things that we don't need and I think your charity is doing excellent work.”

Location - Claygate Village Hall Car Park (KT10 0JP)

Dates - 8th / 15th Nov

Time - 9am - 1pm

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Tue, 14/10/2014 - 07:57

You might have heard us say a bicycle is more than just a bicycle, but rarely has it been more true than for Moses Musukubili, a health worker and bike shop manager from Namibia’s Zambezi region. For Moses and the children in his care, bikes and bicycle maintenance mean food and a path to a better life.

Children who are supported by the Hard Working Men’s Bicycle Shop in Katima Mulilo play near the shop.

Managing the Hard Working Men’s bicycle shop on the outskirts of Katima Mulilo, Moses is a member of Catholic AIDS Action (CAA), an organisation that coordinates a growing network of health workers throughout the country. One of our partners, BEN Namibia, work with CAA to establish bike social enterprises, resulting in jobs for health volunteers and valuable income, which supports their HIV work. We’ve been sending bikes to these projects since 2007.

For most of us, Namibia is just another name on a map in the vastness of Africa, but for Moses it’s a place that counts almost 160,000 orphans and vulnerable children, representing a staggering 30% of all Namibian children under eighteen.

In the past 10 years Namibia has experienced sustained economic growth, but this hasn't benefitted everyone. Income inequality is still a huge problem and despite the decline of underweight children, malnutrition is widespread. Malnutrition ranges from the visible - stunting (too short for age) and wasting (too thin from height), to the invisible - the deficiency in vital nutrients such as vitamin A, iron, folic acid and Iodine. Moses knows first-hand that malnutrition has serious implications for both mental and physical development. With the number of orphans growing daily as their parents succumb to HIV, the need for support is unrelenting.

Trained CAA volunteers offer love, emotional, practical and educational support to over 18,000 registered children. For the majority, that love starts with nourishment. Moses had been acutely aware that a large number of children in his local community were malnourished, some of them severely so. In order to help, he began the process of registering the names of all the orphans and vulnerable children. The next step was to approach the ministries of health, education, and gender equality to ensure that the children were registered for identity documents, for monitoring of critical health indicators, and importantly to receive government benefits.

Hard Working Men’s bicycle shop
Moses checks data on the list of 175 children that he feeds through the Hard Working Men’s Bicycle Shop in Katima Mulilo.
In response to the need, Catholic AIDS Action then found a donor to provide food. But with the number of children in need increasing daily, there simply wasn’t enough to go around, so Moses started using his bicycle shop profits to buy more. Soon, he was feeding 175 children three times a week!

With strict monitoring of the children, Moses soon saw the results as they began to put on weight, return to health and improve in their school performance.

Ruben Imbala, a security guard, bought his bicycle at the Tuliwonde Bicycle Shop in Ngoma. He uses it to collect firewood, and for mobile Vetkoek sales in the village.

As if 175 mouths to feed is not enough work for one man, Moses’ shop also supports other health workers and outreach volunteers by providing affordable bicycles, bike maintenance, and servicing bicycles in his community.

He’s now growing a customer base in neighbouring Zambia, where quality bicycles are in high demand - so he can feed even more. For him and the children in his care, bikes and bicycle maintenance mean food, food means health, better grades at school and brighter future.

Help us help Moses and BEN Namibia to providing sustainable transport and development in Africa.

By: Derek Balcombe

Posted: Fri, 03/10/2014 - 15:21

Re~Cycle is hiring a Warehouse Supervisor

Re~Cycle is busier than ever and we are looking for someone to help with our increased success...

Full Time - 5 days a week (and every other Saturday morning)

Salary - £18,000 per annum

Millions of unwanted bicycles are rusting in garages or being thrown away in the UK, while in Africa, a four-hour daily walk is common. Mothers collect clean water, parents trek to the farm, factory or market and children can walk up to 20 miles to get to school and back.

The charity collects unwanted bikes, parts and tools in the UK and ships them to Africa, 59,000 so far. There, our trusted and capable partners refurbish and maintain the bikes, to ensure a long life before distributing them to people as an affordable means of transport. Many teach locals to repair their own bikes, helping them to improve their lives in a sustainable way.

The successful candidate will have:

  • Experience of a warehouse, workshop or distribution environment
  • Experience of working with a structured and methodical approach to tasks and have the ability to change priorites as necessary
  • A proven track record of building and developing good working relationships with colleagues and external contacts
  • Confident team leader skills
  • Good communication skills

The post holder must be self motivated and able to work on his/her own initiative and be confident at managing and prioritising a varied workload.

If that sounds like you and you would like to work with a young, enterprising charity with ambitious plans for growth, please see below on how to apply and to download a Job Description and Person Specification.

Application Procedure:

Please click here to download an application form (once you have clicked on the link you will need to click download and then direct download to access and complete the form in Word) and email it to:

Closing Date: Midday Friday 31st October 2014.

Shortlisted applicants will be notified by 5pm on Tuesday 4th November 2014.

Interviews: Friday 7th November 2014 in Colchester, Essex

Details and background:

Click here to view the Job Description and Person Specification.

Watch an 8 minute video about us.


Location - Wormingford, Nr Colchester
Staff - we only have 7 Staff but many wonderful volunteers
Informal work environment

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Thu, 02/10/2014 - 08:33

Re~Cycle bikes for Ghana

This month we sent three containers of bikes to our partners in Ghana.

The first shipment of 435 bicycles was sent to Ability Bikes Cooperative in Ghana, a social enterprise bike shop that provides affordable transport options to the local community of Koforidua. Oli McDonough, a bicycle mechanic from the Halfords Bromley store, recently visited Ability Bikes, helping to improve their storage solutions and stock control. We are extremely happy to be providing them with more bikes to further support their goals.

The second shipment of 429 bicycles went to our highly valued partners the Village Bicycle Project. They’ve been running a number of highly successful workshops in rural parts of Ghana, providing affordable bikes, mechanic training and selling the tools needed to maintain them.

A third container comprised of bikes collected by the 5 London branches of Action Bikes was loaded on the 27th of September at Twickenham RFC by Action Bikes and Re~Cycle staff along with a hoard of wonderful volunteers. A total of 422 bikes, along with spare parts and tools were loaded into the container, and will no doubt be of great use in aiding the Village Bicycle Project with their workshops.

We are ecstatic to be making such great progress and would like to thank our staff, volunteers and supporters for all their incredible work.

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Mon, 22/09/2014 - 07:39


Our dear friends Action Bikes are loading their 6th container for Re~Cycle on the 27th of September. As always, if you’ve got a few hours to spare - a helping hand would always be greatly appreciated!

If you’ve got a bike or spare parts you’d like to add to the container, simply bring it down on the day! If you arrive before 10am you’ll also be treated to a BBQ lunch!

Where: Twickenham RFC

When Saturday 27th Sep 9:30 - 16:30

View on map -

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Mon, 15/09/2014 - 05:15

Hardcourt Re~Cycle Auction

Hardcourt are exhibiting a number of exquisitely customised polo bike wheel covers at Look Mum No Hands! in Mare street.

All the works will be available to buy via silent auction, with all proceeds going to Re~Cycle. All the works can be viewed here.

To bid for one of these beautiful polo bike wheel covers, email including the artist name and your auction bid amount (Reserve £30).

Winners will be announced on the 6th October. 

The exhibition is running from 4th September - 4th October. 

Look Mum No Hands
125—127 Mare Street
E8 3RH

Hardcourt Re~Cycle Auction Dan Mather

hardcourt Re~Cycle Auction Isabelle Falconer

hardcourt Re~Cycle Auction James Chuter

By: Luke Dubuis

Posted: Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:34

BEN SA container loading

Last week we sent another container of bikes to the Bicycle Empowerment Network (BEN) in South Africa. A total of 422 bikes were shipped along with tools and spare parts needed to maintain them. Some of these bikes will be sent to a new Bicycling Empowerment Centre (BEC) in Montagu, approximately 150 miles North East of Cape Town.

Kevin Ablitt and Noelle Peacock

This new workshop is being set up in a shipping container thanks to the support of 2 donors and long term supporters of Re~Cycle: Kevin Ablitt and Noelle Peacock. Together they have raised a staggering £6,000 to fund the project. These funds have paid for the shipping costs of the 40’ container and a 20’ container donated by BEN to the new BEC in Montagu.

The 20’ container will be converted into a fully operational bicycle workshop. William Swanepoel, the new BEC manager, will run the workshop. The funds raised by Kevin and Noelle will also cover business and mechanic training for William to ensure that the workshop is a success. A total of 50 bikes will be sent for the new shop, along with spares and tools needed to kit out the workshop. Kevin and Noelle will also be travelling to South Africa in October to assist with the setting up of the new workshop, to help it get off to a good start!