University of Glasgow e-bikes

Staff can use one of the University of Glasgow e-bikes for business travel or intercampus travel.

The e-bikes are an enjoyable, carbon-free (at source) alternative to using fossil-fuel-powered vehicles during work hours. E-bikes are not unlike a regular bicycle but are also equipped with an electric battery that assists you when you pedal. This means you can arrive at your destination comfortably, even after cycling up a steep hill. Therefore, they can also be used by those who would normally not consider cycling, may it be due to low fitness levels, too long journeys or the lack of shower / suitable clothing options for a professional appearance. 

Use e-bikes for business travel / intercampus travel

Staff can book out an e-bike for a few hours, to use when travelling between University sites or to meetings. Before being able to do so, staff must be registered and inducted into the system.  

University e-bike scheme

What is the University scheme?

The University has obtained 8 e-bikes for use by staff members, to fulfil their University duties. These can be used by any staff member, for travelling to meetings, transporting items, travelling between the campuses. E-bikes are very much like normal bicycles, users are still required to pedal, however a battery powered motor assists to make the journey easier.

Who can use the University e-bikes?

The e-bikes are available for use for all University staff members and Associates, who sign the scheme Terms and Conditions in the User Agreement, take part in an induction and book an e-bike according to booking procedures. Availability may however be restricted depending on where staff are based.

What can the e-bikes be used for?

The e-bikes can be used for any business travel / intercampus travel, preferably within one day. Currently, we would only allow the use of University e-bikes for commuting or personal purposes under specific agreement. There is NO COVER under the University insurance policy for an employee’s personal liability for use of the e-bike during their own leisure time.

Why should staff use e-bikes for business travel?

Are you sometimes thinking that cycling is not for you, because you are not fit enough or don’t want to arrive exhausted or sweaty? Then e-bikes would be a great alternative for you.

  • They are battery assisted, which means you get a boost when pedalling.
  • To use an e-bike does not require any level of fitness, you only need to engage in gentle exercise.
  • They offer a great way to build in gentle exercise into your day through none-vigorous pedalling.

Public transport options between the campuses are not perfect, so using an e-bike to go between Gilmorehill and Garscube would be a flexible and fast way to travel. From Berkeley Square and the Olympia Building, they would be the fastest travel option to Gilmorehill.

In times of a Climate Emergency, the e-bikes will replace journeys made by private car, University vehicle or taxi as travel mode, and so contribute to emission savings. This also translates to University cost savings.

The University e-bikes


The University has obtained ‘Bergamont Horizon’ e-bikes. These e-bikes are made for urban cycling and

  • have a low-step through frame;
  • have disc brakes and all-weather tyres;
  • have in-built lights;
  • can carry up to 115 kg (includes rider and luggage).

What sizes are available ?

The University e-bikes users can choose between two frame sizes – Medium (48/52 cm) and Large (56 cm). These sizes should serve most user’s body heights. Please note, that the saddles are easily adjustable. The e-bikes based at Berkeley Square and Olympia Building have the frame size 'Medium'.

Battery range

The range of one full battery depends on weight carried, choice of gears, choice of battery assistance level and terrain. In average, we would expect between 50 to 75 km range.

Motor speed restrictions

The motor will only engage when pedalling and will cut out if speed of 25 km/h has been reached. This means you can continue to pedal, but there will be no further assistance from the motor above this speed restriction.

Manufacturer information

Some common questions about the Bergamont e-bikes are also answered here.

How can staff access the University e-bikes?

How to register

If you would like to use an e-bike you must read through the information on this webpage and complete an User Agreement. You then need to attend a short practical induction to be shown how the e-bike works. This will include a trial ride.

After completing these steps you will be emailed details about how to book an e-bike and record your rides.

You must be competent at riding a bicycle to use an e-bike. 

Registration process

  1. Read through all sections of this webpage. 
  2. Read the e-bike scheme - privacy statement, which explains what data we collect in relation to e-bike use, and what we are doing with this data.
  3. Complete the e-bike scheme - user agreement. You may want to keep a copy for yourself, as this agreement includes the Terms and Conditions for participation in the scheme.
  4. Contact the Travel Planning team, to arrange an induction. You will not be able to book an e-bike until you have completed the induction.

Please note - to take part in the e-bike scheme, you will have to be confident and competent in cycling. If this is not the case yet, please contact the Travel Planning Team to access cycling training.


You must take part in a practical induction to ensure that you understand how to safely operate the e-bike. You will be shown:

  • how to correctly fit a helmet;
  • locking and unlocking the bike;
  • fitting and use of the battery / on-board computer;
  • how to perform a basic maintenance check;
  • how to attach and detach the panniers,

followed by a short cycle ride.

How to book

After completing the registration process and the User Agreement, followed by the practical induction, you will be emailed a confirmation that you are now an approved user of the scheme. You are then free to book an e-bike for your business travel.

Currently, we accept bookings for 6 e-bikes which are situated at Main Gate House at Gilmorehill, and 2 e-bikes at the Garscube Gate House.

The use of e-bikes under the scheme is free for University staff.

Booking from


Booking contact

Booking phone number

Booking email

Gilmorehill Main Gate House

5 size M

1 size L

Security colleagues

0141 330 4282

Garscube Gate House

1 size M

1 size L

Security colleagues

0141 330 5799

When booking, please advise on your desired pick-up and drop-off time, as well as the preferred e-bike frame size. Please also advise on any additional equipment you may need, when making the booking. Scheme admin will try to accommodate your requirements, subject to availability.

Additional Equipment

Equipment available for users are –

  • helmet and high visibility waistcoat (mandatory to be worn when using the bikes on University business – these are available for those users who do not have their own);
  • Waterproof jackets (as alternative high-visibility clothing);
  • Panniers.

These can be picked up with the e-bike, if needed.

Using the bike

Pick-up / Sign-out of the e-bike

If your booking has been confirmed, please arrive for pick up at the agreed time. You will be asked to complete a use record (pick-up part) and handed the essential equipment for your journey, including

  • bike computer;
  • bike lock key – the bike lock should be attached to the e-bike
  • in some cases, the battery and key. Normally, the battery would be attached to the e-bike, but you may be requested to take it to the bike if it has just been recharged.

If you are given the e-bike battery, please handle with care. Consider putting it inside the pannier bag or your own bag to carry to the bike. The battery clicks into place on the frame. Make sure that the battery is properly attached by pulling it – if properly attached, it should not move.

The key is used to unlock the battery so that it can be removed after use - please only do so if advised by the relevant booking contact. If not otherwise stated, please leave the battery attached to the bike frame after completing your cycle ride.

The battery will be at least 75% full, if not advised otherwise by staff who hand out the items.

Every user must wear a helmet and high visibility clothing on business trips. If you do not have or want to use your own, these are available as additional equipment.

Bike check

Before every journey on an e-bike, an ‘M Check’ must be performed by the user to check that the e-bike is safe to ride. This should only take a few minutes before you depart.

Visit the SUSTRANS webpage for information on how to perform a ‘M Check’. This is also covered in the induction.

It is your responsibility as the user of the e-bike to ensure that it is safe to ride. You should not use the e-bike if you identify any problems. Please report any problems immediately to the Reception. You must NOT attempt to rectify any problems (including a puncture). For the safety of all users, any problems with the e-bikes will be dealt with by a qualified bike mechanic.

Using the e-bike

Clip-on bike computer

The small on-board computer / control panel has to be attached at the handle bars. For the battery to operate you need to switch it on using the Power button.

There are 4 levels of assistance on the control panel, from ‘Eco’, ‘Touring’, ‘Sport’ to ‘Turbo’.

The control panel shows how much battery power is left (depending on chosen assistance level).

It also shows – distance covered per trip, total distance covered by bicycle, and enables you to operate the lights.

Lights and Motor

You use the on-board computer to turn on the built-in lights. There is a button for this next to the Power button. By law you must always switch the lights on in the hours of darkness or in poor light conditions. Always check that the lights are working before you set off.

Built into the crank at the base of the bicycle, the motor is to be left alone and does not need your attention. The faster you pedal, the more assistance you get in relation to the assistance setting you have chosen.

The motor powers the bicycle up to 25 km/h. If you are going faster than that, the motor does not further assist. The bicycle is then running like a normal pedal bike.


The e-bike has gears, just like a normal pedal cycle. You should adjust these according to the terrain. Always set off in low gear from stationary, then go through the gears as your speed increases. Select an easy gear under normal pedalling.

Cycling safely

  • You have to wear a correctly fitted cycle helmet, which is securely fastened and conforms to current regulations. A helmet is provided with each e-bike if you do not have your own.
  • Wearing light coloured or reflective clothing during the day and reflective clothing and/or accessories in the dark increases your visibility. A high visibility waistcoat is provided with each bike use.
  • Always use the built-in lights after dark or when visibility is poor.
  • Ride positively, decisively and well clear of the kerb. Look and signal to show drivers what you plan to do and make eye contact when possible, so you know drivers have seen you.
  • Avoid riding up the inside of large vehicles, like lorries or buses. These vehicles have very large blind spots – areas of the road that they cannot see, which could include you. Give such vehicles plenty of space or wait behind them.
  • Familiarise yourself with and follow the Highway Code Rules for Cyclists.
  • There is some advice on safe cycling on the Think! Campaign webpage.

Weather conditions

  • Only use the e-bike when it’s safe to do so i.e. not in extreme conditions such as icy roads, high winds or heavy rain.
  • Cycle according to weather conditions or cancel your journey.


  • We recommend using dedicated cycle lane routes wherever possible.
  • Quieter roads are often safer and more pleasant to ride on.
  • Use Glasgow Cycle Streets or Open Cycle Maps to find a suitable route
  • For travel between Gilmorehill Campus, Garscube Campus, the QEUH and Berkeley Square/Tay House, please use these recommended routes.
  • For intercampus travel, the Kelvin Walkway offers a motor-traffic free route from Gilmorehill to Garscube for nearly the full length of the journey, with direct access to Garscube Campus.

Securing the e-bike

  • Once at your destination you must lock the e-bike to an immovable object (ideally a cycle stand), using the D-lock.
  • The D-lock must always be attached to the frame of the bike and the immovable object.
  • Aim to use a secure cycle store where available.
  • Avoid lifting the e-bike to prevent injury; wheel wherever possible.
  • If the temperature outside is expected to drop below 0°C you must take the battery with you and store it inside.
  • There are bicycle parking facilities on both main campuses.

Returning the e-bike

It is essential that the e-bike is returned by the time specified in the booking. If you cannot keep to the booking period, please phone the booking contact, to advise on the delay or enquire for an extension of your booking.

Together with the e-bike, return the battery if asked so, the on-board computer, keys and any additional items. The lock should remain with the e-bike. You will be asked to complete the ‘return-part’ of the user record. If there are any issues, these must be logged on the record.


What sizes of e-bikes are available for users ?

There are two sizes of e-bikes in the fleet: Frame size Medium - 48/52 cm and Large - 56 cm.

Please check the Bergamont Bicycles Size Guide to find out which bicycle is best suited for you (our bicycles are E-Horizon Wave)

Will the battery support make me go very fast?

The motor will support a speed up to 25 km/h (about 15 mph). After that, the motor will cut out.

How far can I go with one battery charge?

This depends a lot on charging status, support level chosen, terrain and weight carried, but could be up to more than 100 km in 'Eco' mode ! We would expect at least between 50 and 80 kilometres.

What happens to the battery at the end of its life ?

While we think that e-cycling is a great travel mode to enable those who normally would not cycle, and hope that the University e-bikes will replace more polluting and CO2 emitting travel modes, we accept that battery manufacture and waste is not sustainable. Currently, we have an arrangement with our retailer to take batteries back for correct disposal and add to the battery recycling stream offered by Glasgow City Council. However, the battery can be recharged for up to 1000 times, before it would come to the end of its life.

Can I take the e-bike home?

In some instances, such as a booking at the end of a day, it may be more convenient to take the e-bike home after use. If you consider to do so, please agree with the relevant booking contact beforehand. This can only be approved if it does not interfere with a booking for the next day.

It is important to note that the e-bike will not be covered by the University insurance policies, if not used for an University business journey, such as travel home.

You may also want to consider if you can store the University e-bike safely overnight at your home to prevent theft. Again, the University Insurance Policy would not cover theft of University property at private homes.

What does the University insurance cover when using the e-bike?

What the University policy does cover - 

  • Public liability insurance provides cover for the University’s legal liability for loss, damage or injury that occurs to a third party. This means that if you are involved in an incident where a third party sustains an injury or loss or damage to property, any subsequent claim will be dealt with by the University’s insurers.
  • Employer's liability insurance provides an indemnity to the University in respect of legal liability to pay damages to employees as a result of bodily injury, death, illness or disease arising out of and in the course of their employment.
  • The University property insurance covers the e-bikes for any accidental damage or theft whilst being used by an employee during the normal course of business. Anyone using the e-bike must ensure that it is secured at all times with an appropriate lock or shackle. A high-quality D-lock is provided with each e-bike.

What the University policy does not cover -

  • There is no cover under the University insurance policy for an employee’s personal liability for use of the e-bikes during their own leisure time. This may be covered by a household insurance policy.
  • There is no cover for loss, damage or theft of the e-bike if used for trips that are not on University business.
  • There is no cover for loss of, or damage to, personal clothing or personal items, unless there is fault or negligence on the part of the University.
  • Criminal Prosecution – Defence costs and fines incurred by an individual arising out of their negligent use of the e-bikes are not covered.

What to do if something goes wrong? - Breakdown Procedure

The battery has run out/there has been a mechanical fault with the e -bike and I can’t complete my journey

This is unlikely to happen, as you will be supplied with a battery which is at least 75% full. Otherwise you will have been made aware to a lower charged battery and adjusted your trip accordingly. However, if the battery is empty for any reason and you have not completed your journey yet, the e-bike will still function as a normal bicycle, so you’ll still be able to pedal as normal.

It is your responsibility to get the e-bike to a safe place, ideally back to the pick-up / drop -off location.

If the fault happens within normal working hours (Mon- Fri., 8.30am - 4.15pm), contact Transport Services for advice or assistance, including pick-up. Also, most taxis with disabled access will allow a bike to be brought with you.

I’ve got a puncture

The tyres are puncture resistant, so this will hopefully not happen very often. If possible, take the bike to a nearby bike shop and ask them to fix it for you. There will be a small cost attached to this, normally in the region of £10. Ensure that you get a receipt for the work and you will be reimbursed.

Alternatively, follow the advice as above and contact Transport Services. You may then have to complete your journey by other means.

Last resort, lock the e-bike up as safely as possible, remove the battery, on-board computer and panniers and take with you, make your way home on public transport/taxi. Please do inform the relevant booking contact that the bicycle can not be returned due to the fault. Deliver removed items back to where you picked up as soon as possible.

The bike was stolen from where I left it

Let Campus Security and Operational Support and your relevant booking contact know immediately. Continue your journey by public transport or taxi.

There is some minor damage to the e-bike but it is still functioning

When you bring the bike back, include details on the damage on the user record.


Campus Security and Operational Support - Gilmorehill   Tel 0141 330 4282

Campus Security and Operational Support - Garscube     Tel 0141 3305799

Transport Services (Mon- Fri., 8.30am - 4.15pm)                 Tel 0141 330 5330

Emergencies (internal telephones only) Gilmorehill ext 4444, Garscube ext 2222

The Police: 101 (non-urgent) or 999 (urgent)