Who we are – 2

The History of Bikeworks

In the beginning

Bikeworks was founded as a social enterprise in 2006 in London’s Eastend, opening its first premises overlooking Victoria Park in Tower Hamlets.

Founding partners Jim Blakemore and Zoe Portlock created the original vision for Bikeworks, inspired by London winning the bid to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, wanting to seize the opportunity for excluded people.

Bikeworks - growing up

Bikeworks relocated to larger retail space, moving into the old East London Advertiser premises in Bethnal Green. It grew quickly during this period, with additional investment from the Social Business Trust, and also corporate sponsorship from Barclays for our employability programmes. Opening an additional four retail shops, a training centre, and an All Ability hub in Little Wormwood Scrubs. This was the period of Legacy after a successful London 2012 Games.

Bikeworks - achieving our mission

Bikeworks continues to evolve its business model to achieve even more social impact every year, responding to the needs of our beneficiaries, while collaborating with others to ensure sustainability. By 2018, Bikeworks had reduced the number of physical locations it operated from, moving towards a mobile, outreach model, this has assisted us in reducing our costs, while better achieving and maximising our social impact. We moved into our new home on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park within the Lee Valley VeloPark an inspiring venue, this is the perfect location for us to continue to grow our activities such as Team Building and Maintenance Courses.

Bikeworks - moving forward

Our new location in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park has seen our All Ability Cycling clubs continue to grow, this remains our focus as we remain specialists across a range of different needs that include, mental health, dementia, physical and learning disabilities. We have also established a Centre of Excellence.