A DORCHESTER bike store is urging customers to help change lives in Africa.

The county town’s Halfords store in Weymouth Avenue is taking part in a scheme enabling cyclists to donate or trade in their old bikes.

The bikes will be sent to Africa to help health workers reach communities, children get to school and farmers transport goods to market while customers will get ten per cent off the price of a new one.

The store is collecting second-hand bikes until Monday and all suitable donated bikes will be sent to Africa as part of Halfords’ partnership with charity Re~Cycle.

The charity aims to make the most out of millions of unused bikes currently taking up space in sheds and garages in the United Kingdom to help transform the lives of people in Africa. It also teaches local people how to repair and maintain bicycles, which creates employment and improves lives in a sustainable way.

Halfords chief executive Matt Davies said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for customers to trade in their old bikes, get ten per cent off a new one if they want to and help a great cause too.

“Bikes can transform the lives of people in Africa and our work with Re~Cycle is an exciting example of where recycling can make a real difference, with over 4,800 bikes already recycled through previous trade in events so far.”

Founder of Re~Cycle Merlin Matthews added: “We’re really excited about the trade-in event, which is part of our long-term partnership with Halfords and helps in our ambition – to get access to all those unwanted bikes and raise awareness of how people here can very easily assist those in Africa.”

The charity is particularly keen for donations of sturdy mountain bikes for teenagers and adults but all bikes that are in reasonable condition, including kids’ bikes, will be accepted by Halfords provided they are complete with no cracks in the frame and less than 25 per cent rust.

For details of the trade in event visit halfords.com/re-cycle For more information about the work of Re~Cycle visit re-cycle.org