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West Midlands Cycle Hire

As a strategic partner we manage all aspects of West Midlands Cycle Hire. The scheme covers the largest geographical area of any cycle hire scheme in the UK - operating across seven local authority areas.

Our end-to-end management of the scheme includes supplier coordination, fleet maintenance, rebalancing (to guarantee bike availability across the service area), marketing and customer support. 

The hybrid scheme of fixed and geo-fenced stations includes 1350 pedal bikes and 162 docking stations and in December 2021 we expanded the scheme by introducing150 eBikes to our fleet. 

It is a truly local scheme which generates employment within the region and has a local supply chain; we work with our trusted supplier Pashley Cycles from Stratford-Upon-Avon to deliver a British-made quality cycle and used a network of local suppliers in the West Midlands to produce the docking stations and locking hardware. 

The technology behind the scheme is also supplied by a British-based micromobility supplier who we work closely with to deliver an intuitive user app from which riders can find and hire available bikes. 

Interesting facts

Within the first nine months of operation the scheme surpassed 165,00 journeys covering over 470,000km. This equates to our riders travelling 12 times around the world, it also represents a potential carbon saving of 70 tonnes of CO2. 60,000 people used the scheme in its first nine months which equates to 1.5% of the local population. 

 

Technical advancement and innovation 

Innovation is at the heart of the scheme - through our experience with the London and Edinburgh schemes we designed a bespoke solution capable of meeting performance indicators, such as bike availability and docking station capacity.

We worked together with the local transport authority to integrate the cycle hire user app with their existing customer travel app. This enables customers to pay for their cycle hire journey via their existing travel account. We are also leading future developments with the authority’s travel app to enable the hire process to be integrated as well; this will help us to provide a smooth and accessible customer user journey across the West Midlands transport system.

Customer engagement

To ensure a smooth rollout we led on managing the complex stakeholder relationships between the seven local authorities and coordinated the marketing and communications, delivering high customer engagement, rider uptake and public awareness. We use our sector experience to create campaigns and implement user messaging that help aid behaviour change and a modal shift towards cycling. 

Within our activities we engage with hard-to-reach groups such as young people, unemployed, those on low incomes and people from BAME backgrounds to help ensure that the scheme is fully accessible to all. 

Marketing and PR

We’re proud to have won the UK Digital PR Award Campaign of the Year 2022 - Public Sector.  The award recognised the strategic PR and marketing campaign that we developed and implemented to launch West Midlands Cycle Hire on behalf of our partner, the West Midlands Combined Authority.

Our fully integrated campaign over paid and owned channels was recognised for raising awareness across the region’s seven local authorities, engaging potential users and converting engaged segments to become regular users of the scheme.