E-Scooter operator TIER ends its contract in York after three and a half years

The contract will end on May 31st TIER is in negotiations with other operators


TIER, the operator of popular e-scooters and bikes has decided to end its contract in York after a three and a half year contract.

The council has said this decision follows TIER’s desire to focus resources on locations with “stronger long-term growth potential”.

The e-scooters have been present in York since September 2020 as a part of the Government Department for Transport’s micro-mobility trial scheme.

As reported by the BBC, a council spokesperson said TIER’s contract would end on May 31st, but the council has said it is in negotiation with other operators.

After three and a half years, TIER has decided to end its contract in York, meaning the e-scooters and bikes will no longer be available after May 31st.

Jessica Murphy, head of Public Policy at TIER, said: “It is with a heavy heart that we have chosen not to continue operating in York beyond the end of our existing contract.

“In light of both our path to profitability and the way our business has developed in the UK, we have had to take the difficult decision to focus our resources in other locations with stronger long-term growth potential.”

Jessica told York Mix of the struggles TIER had operating due to the nature of the city. She said: “Each city has its own unique set up and unfortunately York’s size and geography make it difficult for us to run financially self-sustaining service in the long run.”

She spoke of the council’s support of the initiative and said: “City of York Council have been unfailingly supportive of the scheme since its inception and we wish them every success in their future active travel plans.”

The trial in York was put in place to monitor and collect information about the use of hired e-scooters and e-bikes across York in order to inform the creation of national guidelines.

Since the start of the scheme, almost 60,000 users in York have clocked up over 820,000 miles (1.3 million km) over more than 500,000 journeys. The scheme quickly expanded across the city over the years from the initial areas of the York Hospital and the University of York, showing its initial success.

Jessica Murphy added that the trial had shown that “micro-mobility” could be implemented “safely and conscientiously in an important and historic city” and that there was urgent request for alternative modes of transport.

Pete Kilbane, executive member for economy and transport at the council, spoke of the success of the trial and its findings and said: “We’ve had an excellent partnership working with TIER over the years, and we’d like to thank them for working on the trial here in York. We’re disappointed TIER have decided to withdraw from York, but we know the findings will be prove insightful for the Department for Transport for the creation of their national guidelines and call on the Government for clarity about e-scooter legislation.”

Speaking about how the trial has made developments in sustainable transport, he continued: “Participating in the Department for Transport trial enabled York to gain valuable insight into the use of e-scooters and e-bikes, and how we might look to make these permanent sustainable transport options in future.

“The temporary government legislation for the trials are still in place, so we are in discussion with the Department for Transport about the options we have for a new operator to run an e-scooter trials in York.”

The law remains that e-scooters can only be used as part of council-run rental schemes and riders must hold at least a provisional driving licence and be insured. It also remains illegal to use privately owned e-scooters on roads.

Related stories recommended by this writer:

Criminally Good Books: The newest independent bookstore opens in York

Former York student and family ‘perilously’ trapped in Gaza with no food or shelter

YUSU responds to claims made by former officers that SU blocked plant-based food policy