Falkirk's Helix stepping up security after e-bike vandalism

Several incidents of mindless vandalism have led the powers-that-be to consider installing more security at the home of the world famous Kelpies.

By James Trimble
Wednesday, 3rd February 2021, 11:29 am

Last year the Kelpies themselves suffered at the hands – and feet – of two climbers who videoed their antics as they scaled the massive monument for their own amusement and now Falkirk Community Trust has reported Helix Park’s successful e-bike facility was “often vandalised” last year.

Now the trust stated the local authority is looking to increase security at the park to try and ensure this does not happen again in 2021.

A Falkirk Community Trust spokesperson said: “We are delighted to report an increase in the usage of the e-bikes located at the Helix Park. Forth Environment Link reported a substantial growth in the use of their e-bikes across 11 Forth Valley sites with the Helix being by far the most popular, accounting for 40 per cent of all the miles cycled and 39 per cent of all rides.

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Helix park's popular e-bikes facility has fallen victim to vandalism in the past

“However, the provision of these bikes has not come without its challenges. The bikes at the Helix Station were often vandalised in 2020, at a cost of about £2500 to the operators of the scheme.

“Falkirk Council is considering installing new CCTV coverage in the e-bike area of the Kelpies.”

Clement McGeown, Forth Bike project officer, said: “Despite some complications, it is clear the scheme has grown in popularity in 2020, especially since the start of the pandemic, and the trends in the statistics suggest that usage will further grow in 2021.

“I used to believe that the high volume of usage at the Helix was mainly due to tourism, but these stats in a pandemic year which has hit tourism, shows that success is down to Falkirk locals turning up to give the bikes a shot in their spare time.

“The scheme is dependent on users reporting damage and vandalism, however. If you find a damaged Forth Bike, or if you witness anyone vandalising or misusing the bikes, you can report it to the Forth Bike team through the Official Forth Bike App, or by calling us at 0800 368 8093.”