Places still available on City & Guilds Cycle Mechanics Course January 2018

Recycles-Ilford offer a City and Guilds Course in Cycle Mechanics in partnership with Redbridge Institute of Adult Education. There are still places available on the January 2018 course.

This is the City and Guilds Level 2  Cycle Mechanic Course (3902-28). It is the Industry Standard entry level as a mechanic and is equivalent to Cytech Level 2, the other cycling industry entry level qualification.

Recycles-Ilford course is probably the cheapest in the South East at £458 as the course is now part funded by City Hall.

The next course is planned for 11 weeks from Tuesday 9th January 2018. On completion of the course you will be qualified to a level sufficient to work in a bike shop as a mechanic.

To book the course, please contact the Redbridge Institute of Adult Education on 020 8550 2398 or email enquiries@redbridge‑ and quote course number GZ 1606 (or GG5503 for the taster Course) See page 37 of the 2017-18 Prospectus in the Health and Wellbeing section

Singers Wanted – 2017 Santa Ride

Singers or complete choirs are wanted for Recycles’ Santa Ride on Saturday 9th December 2017.

It is that time of the year again, dust off the Santa suit, elf, angel or any Christmas theme suit/hat will do, polish your bike’s antles and join us for our annual Santa Ride. We are meeting at the Salvation Army Hall, Ilford from 12:45 and setting off on a gentle and slow circular ride around NW Redbridge at 1pm, stopping to sing carols and arriving back at the Hall around 4pm for hot drinks, mince pies and cake. Arrive early and a have look around the pop-up market for some present ideas.

Previous years rides have been great fun and the singing greatly improved by passers-by, so this year we are looking for cycling singers. Recycles Santa Ride will be raising funds for  Project Malachi  and the Redbridge Cold Weather Centre.

If you don’t have a bike, no worries as we will happily sell or lend you one before we leave. Everyone is welcome.

Santa Ride 2017

Change of Management at Recycles

Keith who has run recycles for the last 4 years is hanging up his spanners and is moving ‘up north’, but fear not, an excellent successor has been found and is currently taking over the role. Colin has worked as a bike mechanic for 14 years and has run several social enterprises in the past. He takes over recycles as we move into a new phase with a permanent dedicated workshop via Project Malachi now a reality in the near future.

For those who don’t know us, Colin is is the tall bloke on the left

More Bikes for Africa

You may or may not know,  but for the last year or so, we have, thanks to our friends at the London Borough of Redbridge, been storing our excess stock (i.e old bikes ready for renovation) in the Old Gildersons Undertakers in Chadwick Road for a peppercorn rent.

A couple of weeks ago we received notice that it was due to be demolished in the next few weeks – shock horror, you might think – well no, its actually really good news as it means that our plans for a new workshop and homes for the homeless folk of Ilford are coming to fruition … see We are building a container based facility that will do both functions on the footprint of Gildersons.

The downside is that our stock of bikes are in need of a good home – so we are sending them to Africa. Today, with the aid of a very large truck we loaded up around 250 in two loads and delivered them Bikes to Africa in Colchester from where they will begin their long journey to Africa to teams very like us, who will refurbish and distribute them to local people, This bring the number of bikes that we have sent out to around 500 – a great way to celebrate National Bike Week


Change of Staff

It is with sadness and thanks we have to announce that Chris Rigby, who has been with us pretty much from the beginnings of recycles, is now retiring. I have worked with Chris for around 5 years now, both at recycles and before that at the Waltham Forest Bike Recycling scheme, so it feels as though its a bit of an end of an era type thing. Chris finished on Friday 26th May, so we had a bit of a cake and coffee celebration with him.

Chris is being replaced by Sean Bradley. Sean has been volunteering at recycles for about a year and has developed into a pretty good mechanic, he passed his City and Guilds level 2 qualification this year, and is now joining the team as a member of staff, his enthusiasm will mean he will fit in well and be a great addition to the team.

This years Santa Ride

The Annual Santa Ride got off to a great start when the Mayor opened the ride. We had a marvellous time riding over to Wanstead and ‘singing’ carols to raise money for the Salvation Army Cold Weather Shelter. We raised a total of £262 – I think we were being paid to go away – sorry we were a bit tuneless! We may even have caused a recreational drug user to cut back on the wacky baccy when he thought he was hallucinating as a posse of Santas hurtled past him in Wanstead Park. All round it was a great day out!


Xmas Pop up Market a great success

The Xmas ‘Green Pop Up Market yesterday was a great success, We had a record number of Green traders in attendance, we fixed a couple of bikes and a few sales, we remained open until 4pm (albeit the Recycles team popped out for a few hours to have our Santa Ride). By all accounts everything proceeded at pace whilst we were away. The Mayor popped in to fly the flag (he may even have done a bit of Xmas shopping whilst he was with us)

Click on the link below to watch the video of the event recorded by Ros

Recycles Annual Cycling Santa Ride

Its that time of the year again, dust off the Santa suit, polish your antlers, stuff your turkey, wrap your pressies and join us for our annual Santa ride on Saturday 10th December – we are meeting at the Salvation Army Hall at 12:30 and setting of on a gentle and slow circular ride around NW Redbridge, stopping to sing carols badly and arriving back at the Hall around 4pm for hot drinks and mince pies

It was great fun last year – we raised over £200. If you don’t have a bike, no worries as we will happily sell you one before we leave. Everyone is welcome

Recycles Christmas Hols

We will be closed from 5pm on the 19th December until we open again on Monday 9th January 2016

Team recycles wish you all a happy Christmas and a cycling (and recycling) New Year.

I will be spending the break doing lesson plans for our next Level II City and Guilds mechanics course that starts on Tuesday the 10th January (book now to avoid disappointment)

Live Jazz at our Saturday sale tomorrow

Green Pop Up Market featuring The Streets EFG London Jazz Festival

As part of The Streets EFG London Jazz Festival Novembers Green Pop Up Market will be hosting Jazz music with 3 performances. To find out who’s performing and for further information follow us on Facebook @Ilfordgreenpopup or Twitter @IlfordPopUp

Salvation Army, Clements Road



Jyotsna Srikanth & Bangalore Dreams

Europe’s leading violinist from the Carnatic classical tradition, Dr Jyotsna Srikanth is also an accomplished western classical musician having collaborated with acclaimed jazz, western classical and world music artists. Bangalore Dream’s unique Jazz with Indian music topping is leading the way in the world of Fusion, Jazz, Electronic and Folk with percussion, western grooves, electronic beats and the mesmerising electric violin.  T: @violinjyotsna FB: Jyotsna Srikanth


Dave Dean & Chris Wyatt

Swing classics singer with electric guitar accompaniment, taking a jazzy break from the Travelling Tilbury’s.


Natalie Williams – EFG London Jazz Festival Artist

In demand vocalist, Natalie Williams has been a veteran of the British jazz and soul scenes for over a decade. Her Ronnie Scott’s residency, Soul Family Sundays has sold out every month for over 8 years.


Natalie’s adaptable vocal talent and song writing ability has brushed most musical styles. To the mainstream world of commercial music, she is an underground artist known for her distinctive vocals which have appeared on tracks by drum and bass icons such as Goldie or Nu:Tone. Her own youthful output of soul and R&B based tracks resulted in her receiving a MOBO nomination. T: @nataliewilliams



Book now for our 2017 C&G Course

Our partners at Redbridge Institute are taking booking for the next City and Guilds Level 2 Bike Mechanics Course which is due to run from Tuesday 10th January for 10 weeks. This is the entry level qualification for mechanics entering the cycling industry, With the change of administration at City Hall the course is again being subsidised, so I think at £427, we are probably the cheapest way of getting this qualification in the South East (and its free to job seekers etc)

Ring Redbridge Institute of Adult Education on 020 8550 2398 and ask about course HZ1606

If you are new to bike maintenance, come on the taster day on the 8th November (course code HH1607) – it allows us to assess your ability and likelihood of being able to complete the Level 2 course as there are some tricky bits and there are only 6 places available.

New Bikes coming soon

I have just been on the phone talking to Redbridge Police who have agreed to supply us with some more of the unclaimed bikes in their store – keep an eye on the site and you will see them appearing here as they are completed – better still, pop in and see us and bag one before the go on the net

K2K Radio – a new partnership

K2K Radio are a web based online community radio station. Assuming everything works out, we should be broadcasting from our monthly sales (second Saturday of each month – be there or be square) from the 14th May and there on. You can listen to K2K via this link (K2K Radio) which I have also put in our links page. Let us know if you have any requests to be played – I have a few bike related songs I am angling for.

Visit from Zac Goldsmith

Zac Goldsmith, con mayoral candidate popped in to see us in the workshop today with Keith Prince and a couple of their friends. Whilst they were with us, Zac took the opportunity to learn a few mechanical skills, here he is with Keith learning how to re-cable the front derailleur of  a customers bike.

Eco & Up-cycling Sale

Don’t miss our next sale on Saturday the 12th Feb from 10-2. we are being joined by a select band of up-cyclers and an organic sandwich and coffee shop from Transition Town Redbridge.

We should have a fine old selection of Eco and Green products being marketed with our bikes – I am still waiting to hear exactly who will selling with us, but as soon as I know, I will update this post. In the mean time put the date in your diary

Petition to improve cycling around Charlie Browns

Its not as though we are adverse to a bit of politics at recycles, its just we are a bit more focussed on bikes most of the time, however cycling/negotiating Charlie Browns roundabout and multiple flyovers is at best a pain in the bum, at worst, a death defying nightmare. Please sign the petition on the attached link to pressurise the Mayor and TfL to address this please

Improve Safety at Charlie Brown’s Roundabout Petition | GoPetition

Our new tool shadow boards

With thanks to our friends at Websters in Forest Gate, we now can boast that the Salvation Army Ilford Corps is the ONLY church in the country with bespoke bike tool shadow boards up on the wall. The boards close up after use and match the other notice boards in the hall, but will save us the toil of carrying large boxes of heavy tools twice a day twice a week when we are open – and they look really great.

The more astute of you will probably notice that the shadows on the boards aren’t actually there yet, but I was so excited by them I thought ‘what the heck, publish and be d****d’.

We are more than happy to share the plans with anyone else who likes the idea (for a reasonable contribution).

Recycles Xmas hours

We will be closed from 5pm on the 21st December until we open again on Monday 4th January 2016

Team recycles wish you all a happy Christmas and a cycling (and recycling) New Year.

I will be spending the break doing lesson plans for our next Level II City and Guilds mechanics course that starts on Tuesday the 5th

Santa’s Ride

Intrepid workers, volunteers and supporters of recycles Ilford all donned their best Santa’s togs and went for a festive ride around Ilford and Wanstead on Saturday. It was all interspersed with carols and fund raising on behalf of the Salvation Army and finished with hot drinks and mince pies back at the workshop (apart from Paul who we managed to loose in Wanstead – whoops).

On route, Keith and John learned – to their embarrassment – that if you only spend £3.49 on a Santa suit, that you should expect the occasional ‘wardrobe malfunction’ – we both had very drafty nether regions!!

We did however raise a total of £296 – with particular thanks to the chap in Wanstead who had just moved house and gave us the coins he found when clearing his old home – a carrier bag full!!

The first (annual) recycles Santa ride

Help us raise money for the Salvation Army by joining us on our Santa ride

When: Saturday 12th December, arrive at Ilford Salvation Army (15 Clements Road, IG1 1BH) at 12:45pm for a 1pm departure. The route will go via Wanstead and return for mince pies and hot drinks by 3pm.

Dress Code: Full Santa costume preferred, but elves, angels, reindeer and Christmas puddings are all welcome.

Join by emailing to book your place.