A POPULAR Dudley charity which is barmy about bikes is hoping council cash will keep it on the road.

City Can Cycle reconditions donated bicycles before handing them over to families and schools who may not be able to afford to buy their own machines.

However the charity is skint and only keeps going because volunteer workers, many of whom are unemployed or pensioners, pay the bills out of their own pockets.

The organisation, which is based at the Sycamore Green Centre on Old Park Farm Estate, needs around £2,000 for new tools and is preparing applications for grants from Dudley Council’s Area Forums.

City Can Cycle administrator, John Guest, said: “It’s helping disadvantaged families who can’t afford a bike, we let them have a bike for free which puts a smile on their children’s faces.

“It’s all about helping kids and helping the community, we had an open day to show everybody what we do.”

City Can Cycle also provides work experience for young people hoping to become cycle mechanics and the charity donates cycles to schools, which can be raffled off for fundraising initiatives.

Their work has the backing of a number of civic leaders, including Dudley North MP and keen cyclist, Ian Austin.

Mr Austin said: “I think City Can Cycle is a brilliant project and the team that run it are phenomenal people. I think getting children and, for that matter, adults on bikes is a really good way of keeping them fit and healthy.

“I’ve helped them in the past by raising money and giving them bikes and parts I don’t need and I’m urging anyone who has a bike they no longer use to make sure it gets a new lease of life by donating it. I’m also appealing to bike shops and others in the trade to step in and help.”

City Can Cycles is open to the public at The Sycamore Centre on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am to 3pm. People can get in touch with the charity by email at citycancycle@yahoo.com