Cycle Stores Raleigh Through Reccession

By Cormac O’Connor

Fancy getting fit? And saving 500 quid in the process? If so the Cycle to Work scheme may be for you.

The purpose of the scheme is “is to encourage more employees to cycle to and from work. As well as reducing traffic congestion and lowering carbon emissions, more people cycling to work will improve health and fitness levels.”

The scheme, now in its second year, allows employees spend up to €1,000 on a bike and cycling equipment tax free.  The tax break can mean a mean saving of up to 51%.

So what’s the catch? Your employer has to agree to take part in the scheme as the bike must be purchased by them on your behalf.

Getting your employer to agree shouldn’t be a problem according to Ciaran manager of Penny Farthing Cycles “there is no reason for employers not to participate as it cost them nothing, also there is very little paper work”.

The Scheme has seen “a massive take up” added Ciaran. “People who would have come in and spent €300 or €400 on a bike are now spending a grand on a bike. I would say that around 40 to 50% of our business comes trough the scheme”.

Ciaran says the scheme has enabled Penny Farthing Cycles to stave off the recession: “During the boom people weren’t cycling everyone could afford cars so we actually didn’t see much benefit to the Celtic Tiger. Since the scheme was introduces we have had huge increase in business.”

According to the Green party this is a trend not confined to Lower Camden Street with “over four fifths of bike shops reporting an increase in business as a direct result of the scheme.” The Green Party also say that participation in the scheme has increased 125% since its introduction in January of 2009.

Image top: Cian Ginty.

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