Double Olympic gold medallist Alistair Brownlee MBE has announced a partnership with national bike marking and registration scheme BikeRegister.
BikeRegister, owned by security marking provider Selectamark, is used by all UK police forces to assist in the fight against bike crime, with over a million bikes currently registered on the database.
Brownlee has spoken about the benefits of BikeRegister, and about how having a scheme that deters theft and increases the chance of getting your bike back is a great way to keep people cycling and to travel more actively.
“I think BikeRegister is an absolutely fantastic scheme,” said Brownlee. “Luckily, I’ve never had a bike stolen but many people I know haven’t been so lucky – including my brother (fellow triathlete and three-time Olympic medallist Jonny Brownlee) who had his bike stolen whilst travelling.”
The new partnership involves a series of retail opportunities and events to promote bike marking and registration, and BikeRegister will be making a donation to the Brownlee Foundation for every BikeRegister kit sold.
The Brownlee Foundation is a charity set up by Alistair Brownlee and his brother Jonny which hosts events across the UK that aim to encourage the participation of young people in sport.
Brownlee continued: “Whether it’s someone’s beloved racing machine stolen from their garage or their trusted workhorse disappearing from outside a shop – it’s annoying, expensive, and inconvenient. So, having a scheme that helps you protect your bike is of huge importance.”
Every year, hundreds of stolen bikes are returned to their owners thanks to this process. They can also use the app when registering cycles on the database at bike marking events. Through the website and mobile app, over 1,000 searches are made on BikeRegister each day by police, retailers, and members of the public.
Visible and covert marking kits are available from BikeRegister, and they will help protect bikes from theft. The kits are available to purchase at www.bikeregister.com and from retailers including Halfords and Decathlon.
“I think we should all be doing what we can to register our bikes and check the status of bikes we see for sale,” said Brownlee. “It’s free and takes seconds to register a bike on the BikeRegister website. Secondly, it costs between £13 and £30 to mark your bike. It’s not a high price for deterring thieves, and it makes your bike easier to identify.”
Brownlee originally heard about BikeRegister when he worked with Leeds City Council and West Yorkshire Police to promote active travel. In July 2021, he launched a BikeRegister scheme to deter bike theft in Leeds.
He said: “Through my experience working as the Leeds Active Travel Ambassador I’ve learnt how important it is to understand and remove the challenges faced by people considering replacing car journeys with active ones. Clearly cycle theft is one of the major challenges – I think BikeRegister will be one of the major solutions.”
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Managing director of BikeRegister James Brown said: “It is a huge honour to be teaming up with Alistair to push the importance of marking and registering your bike. Alistair really shares our belief that thieves will only give up once they know that the majority of bikes are registered and checked by the police, the public, and retailers.
“We are also delighted to be supporting The Brownlee Foundation, which is an amazing initiative to get children active and healthy.”
Brownlee added: “We all have our part to play to defeat bike theft. Bike retailers, the Police, and local authorities are already helping and will continue to help the effort. Maybe a world where all new bikes sold are marked and registered, where only marked and registered bikes can be resold, and where bikes being spot checked by crime enforcement isn’t too far away.”