Islabikes is launching a new project that will see children's rental bikes made available.
The 'Imagine Project' is currently in its early stages but involves the brand developing a small range of sustainably produced bikes in the UK.
The aim is twofold. Firstly: Islabikes aim to make life easier for families by reducing the cost associated with the growing legs of children. Secondly, they aim to question the current model of design.
Many products are made 'worse' to increase the frequency with which customers need to replace them. Case in point: my parents had a washing machine that lasted 10 years, their replacement lasted two. Currently, 2.1 billion tons of waste make it to landfill sites globally. Islabikes is seeking an alternative.
Designed for riding to school
The bikes will be designed with utility at front of mind, and riding to school will be high on the agenda. Families will be able to rent a bike, giving it back when the child grows out of it. Islabikes will take responsibility for restoring the bike, and passing it on.
The project will begin on a small scale and bikes will be limited. However, it's hoped that early adopters will allow for a rapid growth.
The brand is a pioneer for the manufacture of children's bikes and they hope to lead the way for others to follow.
Responsibility for raw materials
Founder Isla Rowntree explained: "The ownership of the bicycle, and therefore the responsibility for the raw materials, will remain with us. And when one child has grown out of a bicycle, it'll come back to us - and we'll refurbish it and then rent it to another child."
"It's our aspiration to become to cycling industry experts in the sustainable supply of bicycles."
She added: "We're going to have to rethink every step of how we make bicycles, how we provide bicycles for families. To do that we will be looking at the way bicycles were made in the past, and then combining that with new technologies to come up with something for the future. It's our aspiration to become to cycling industry experts in the sustainable supply of bicycles."
Here's a video to show you more...
For more information about the Imagine Project and how to get involved, visit the sire here.
Read more about Isla Rowntree and Islabikes: