Skip to page content
  • Engage Navigate Divert

Bike Back Bristol is an innovative bicycle refurbishment project run by Life Cycle, in partnership with HMP Bristol and funded by The Big Lottery Fund.

We collect donations of unwanted bicycles and teach prisoners at HMP Bristol the skills to fix them up and get back on the road. Refurbished bikes are quality checked, then sold on at affordable prices at public sales.

We also run a referral scheme which enables those on very low incomes to access a refurbished bicycle for just £45 - so long as they are referred by a partner organisation.

We are actively looking for opportunities to support prisoners through work placements and further training after their release.

Bike strip down, cleans, refits, maintenance and re sale.

Referral scheme allowing those on very low incomes to access a good quality refurbished bike for £45.

If you are interesting in becoming a partner organisation - either to refer your service users for a £45 bike or to offer work placements - please get in touch!

We're also always in need of donations of unwanted and abandoned bicycles.

Main office: 0117 353 4580
Create Centre, Smeaton Road, Bristol, BS1 6XN ���
Bike sales: 0117 924 5487

Locations we operate in

Bike Back Bristol - 0117 372 3326

HMP Bristol, Horfield, BS7

Services we Provide


Life Cycle takes donations of unwanted bicycles from the public and takes them to Bristol Prison, where with the help of prisoners we strip down, clean and refit them giving them a new lease of life. Experienced mechanics work with prisoners teaching them mechanical skills and helping them to refurbish bikes to a high standard.

Once fixed the bikes are sold at affordable prices with the intention of helping Bristolians on lower incomes to get a bike and start cycling.

What we do

This opportunity is open to offenders currently within HMP Bristol.

Usual prison processes should be follow in relation to requesting to take part in Bristol Bike Back (speak to you prison offender supervisor or a wing officer to find out more.

Individuals are given the skills and knowledge toperform the follow tasks:

* strip down
* clean
* maintain
* refit

The project provides productive employment, training and qualifications for prisoners.  Ultimately, we hope that some prisoners will learn sufficient skills and gain enough experience that they can gain employment as mechanics on release, helping to reduce re-offending in the future.

Where we do it

HMP Bristol

How to access

All referrals into the scheme for people with HMP Bristol should be via their Offenders Supervisor or Wing Officer.

Bike Donations

We urgently need donations of unwanted bikes.  If you have an unwanted bike you no longer ride, then please consider giving it to us.

Bike Sales

We hold occasional bike sales in Bristol City Centre.  If you are on a low-income, want to start cycling and need an affordable bike, then come along to our next sale.

"I just bought a bike from your sale which i am so thrilled with. It's like you had my dream bike there waiting for me! I just wanted to let you know that all the staff and volunteers there were really really wonderful and are a real asset to your organisation." - Beth


We are currently looking for volunteer bike mechanics who can give up half a day a week on a regular basis to help with our bike recycling project at Bristol Prison. Click here to download an information sheet and if you are interested in getting involved, fill out this short application form.


Bike Minded

Bike Minded is one of Life Cycle's inclusive cycling projects aimed at anyone who has experienced or is experiencing issues with their mental well-being. Clients can self-refer or be referred by another organisation.

What we do


We organise regular supported short and longer rides which are led by a trained and experienced ride leader and supported by up to 2 volunteers on weekdays and at weekends. Participation in the rides is free. We run around 40 rides a year,  3 – 4  a month between March and October and 2 per month between November and February. We always include a stop for refreshments, picnic or lunch and it’s a very relaxed atmosphere, not a race!

Whether it is a long or short ride we always go at the pace of the slowest rider, people can walk up hills if they need and people are generally very supportive of one another. The ethos of all our rides is the same it’s about getting out into the countryside, fresh air and having an enjoyable day. Feedback has shown how valuable people have found the social side of the rides and the spirit of mutual support , and that the rides have helped build self-esteem and confidence.


Access to a low cost bike 

We are sometimes able to help potential new participants who do not currently have a bicycle to obtain a low cost bike, where we have available frames, either directly through our Bike Minded project or in conjunction with one of our other projects, Bike Back that runs from the site of HMP Horfield.

 Cycle lessons

We are also able to provide up to 3 -currently free- cycle training sessions for people living in the Bristol area, tailored to the needs of the individual -suitable for complete beginners as well as those needing a refresher. (Beginners are entitled to up to three free lessons, intermediate and above 1 free lesson). Even if people are already competent cyclists, we do recommend taking up a 1-1 session, which can additionally be used as a route planning session to find a good, safe routes locally. We can also offer participants subsidised places on our beginner and intermediate cycle maintenance courses.

Where we do it

Sites based at the Create Centre & HMP Bristol.

Rides take place across the city

How to access

New participants  would need to complete the attached registration form and send or email back to me. We'd then need to arrange an informal meeting here at the Create Centre (up to an hour) , to finish the registration, give a new client all the info they'll need and a chance to ask any questions about getting involved etc. We also have a couple of agreements we need to ask all new participants to sign. We are very happy for a support worker or friend/ relative to accompany a new participant to this initial meeting.

Back to search results