Police Scotland Joins Forces with Camphill School Aberdeen to Upcycle Abandoned Cycles

March 23, 2022

ACVO News April 2022 - ACVO TSI



A new initiative between ourselves and Police Scotland will see lost and stolen bikes recovered from across the city put to good use through the organisation’s rental scheme which provides green transport for staff and volunteers.


We provide day and residential support to 95 children and young people with learning disabilities and complex additional support needs across three campuses in the west of the city. It recently launched a campaign to raise £10 million over the next 10 years to expand its services to even more vulnerable children and young people.


Our on-site bike repair is a key part of their integrated approach to helping students gain confidence, learn new skills and reach their fullest potential – often achieving outcomes their families never thought possible. Bikes that cannot be reunited with their owners will be donated by the police to the charity and put through an ‘MOT’ at the workshop before being distributed to staff and volunteers throughout the estates. The partnership is also in the early stages of exploring how the bike share initiative can be expanded to other parts of the city.


Our sustainable development and social enterprise lead, Nicolas Nino-Ramirez, said: “Our partnership with Police Scotland, is an exciting next step in our programme to expand our involvement with the circular economy. Building strong working relationships with organisations throughout the region is a critical part of that. The donation of bikes will not only ensure our pupils can develop new skills but by providing green transport options to our staff and volunteers also helps us to continue our concerted efforts to significantly reduce our carbon emissions across our three estates.”


Police Scotland has already donated 30 bikes to the charity, with more to come.


Sergeant John McOuat from Police Scotland’s Westend and Hazlehead Community Policing Team, said: “It is great to be able to put the bikes from our lost and found department to such a worthwhile cause. We do everything we can to ensure lost or stolen bikes are returned to their rightful owners, however where this cannot be done either through bikes not being claimed or identified, we are delighted to be in this partnership with Camphill School Aberdeen, as a way for something positive to come out of a criminal offence which can have a very real impact on victims – some of whom rely on their bike as their main means of transport. We know that donating the bikes will make a big difference at Camphill and are proud to be able to help. ”


Constable Mark Irvine from Police Scotland’s North East Crime Reduction Unit, said: “Unfortunately bike theft continues to be all too commonplace with many bikes being stolen to order by organised crime gangs. Around 60% of all bike thefts occur when the owner didn’t secure their bike, either forgetting to or thinking that it was safe. “


The partnership builds on an our initiative with local charity Stella’s Voice which sees hundreds of bikes upcycled each year which are then shipped to Moldova and donated to children who are the victims of human trafficking.


Sustainability is one of our core focuses, our FRUVER refillery shop, which minimises the use of packaging, sells organic produce reared and grown on the estate, crafts made from recycled materials such as alpaca wool from their own alpacas, and the use of e-bikes and an electric van used to distribute goods from the store to homes on the charity’s Murtle Estate.


Police Scotland advice for bike owners


Register your bike on a secure, Secured by Design (SBD) recognised national database. The police will check these databases if they find bikes in the possession of a criminal or in the street to identify the rightful owner.


Remember to record as many details of your bike as you can, such as the make/model, size, colour, frame number plus any other distinguishing features, and take a photo.


It can take thieves as little as a few seconds to cut through some locks that haven’t achieved the Police Preferred Specification, so use two good quality locks, at least one of which is a D-lock (sometimes referred to as a U-lock).

  • Secure your bike as close to the stand as possible to give any thieves little or no room to manoeuvre.
  • Lock the frame and both wheels to the cycle parking stand. Locks are considered more vulnerable when they come in to contact with the ground, so keep them off the floor.


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