Silvia Osso from Sunderland has taken to two wheels for the first time since she was five years old, thanks to cycle training organised by Go Smarter.
Silvia, who works at HMRC Waterview Park in Washington, has been taking part in a series of cycling lessons with Go Smarter instructors.
Silvia said: “I was a bit worried as I hadn’t been on a bike since I was about five years old, but the trainers were very, very good and it’s definitely made me feel more confident.”
Go Smarter is the Tyne and Wear programme which encourages people to use sustainable forms of transport including cycling, car sharing and public transport. The Go Smarter team works with businesses across the region to help employees to use greener, healthier and more sustainable forms of transport.
Carol Dougherty from Go Smarter said: “Silvia attended a series of cycling sessions with our instructors,who helped her start with the basics of riding a bike and progress to a confident cyclist. Go Smarter Cycle Skills and Training sessions aim to build confidence and encourage people to take to two wheels, even if it’s the first time they’ve ridden in many years.
“It’s fantastic to see the progress Silvia has made in her cycling and I hope she enjoys getting out and about on a bike this spring.”
Silvia added: “I plan to keep cycling as it’s a good form of exercise and I want to find out about some of the cycle routes which are near where I live in Sunderland.”
As well as cycle training, Go Smarter teaches basic bike maintenance and offers bike safety checks and basic repairs through its regular ‘Dr Bike’ sessions.
In 2015/16, Go Smarter is expanding its programme to work with even more companies in the North East, including those based at Go Smarter Sunderland Enterprise Park and Doxford International Business Park in Sunderland; Cobalt Business Park & Silverlink Shopping Centre and Tyne Tunnel Trading Estate in North Tyneside; Port of Tyne & Bede Industrial Estate and Boldon Business Park in South Tyneside.
Go Smarter continues to work with businesses and employees at the four key employment sites around the A1 corridor, which include Newcastle/Gateshead city centres, intu Metrocentre, Team Valley and Washington.