A MOTORBIKE training provider whose courses have transformed the lives of youngsters excluded from mainstream schools is looking for a new home.

Rob Fox, a UK champion in sport moto-gymkhana, is appealing to Swindon businesses to make available their car parks to help him run the Wheels Workshop sessions.

The organisation is based at the Oakfield Project in Walcot. But with work starting in earnest on the new Nationwide-backed housing development, it is expected that Wheels Workshop will need to find a new home.

Survey work by developers last week left a wide trench through the middle of the disused car park Rob had been using to give his young charges the chance to ride around a pre-laid course.

The riding experience was a reward for the youngsters, who spend the bulk of the course learning mechanics.

While the two metre-wide trench has since been filled in, it is unlikely the car park can be used by the children in future.

“The surface is too loose. The kids will fall off their bikes,” said Rob.

The Wheels Workshop owner said Nationwide was “doing the right thing in developing the land” – even though it would leave his pupils without a space to practice their riding skills.

Rob appealed to businesses with unused space in enclosed car parks to offer it up to the project, adding: “There are some big ‘ghost’ car parks in Swindon.

“I appreciate the fact that people don’t want to take a risk and let people on their land.

“But the kids love it and get a lot from it. They get quality training.

"They’re taught to control that motorcycle properly to quite a high level.

“They’re not ripping up a field. Crucially, what I’m trying to teach the kids you can have fun learning and getting better as a rider, but not just anybody.”

Nationwide’s senior commercial manager Nick Spittal confirmed the survey work had been undertaken as part of plans to build more than 200 homes on the former college campus.

“While we expect the site to be back to normal by the end of the week, we’re sorry to hear this has impacted the operation of the Wheels Workshop,” he added.

“We have been in contact with the group and are working with them to find an alternative site to host their event.”