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STUDENTS visiting East Meon Sustainability Centre can find out just how much energy it takes to power our modern appliances by going for a spin on a pedal-powered smoothie-maker.

The centre, which focuses on environmental issues and hosts visits from schools, bought the bike with the help of a grant from East Hampshire District Council.

Penny Rose, education officer, said the cycle, which generates electricity as it is pedalled, helps bring home important lessons in energy conservation and usage.

‘You really get a good idea of how much energy we need when you have to power something yourself,’ she said.

‘It’s a good way of creating sustainable energy and it’s a lot of fun as well.

‘We also use it at events where we get a lot of people coming up and having a go on it. It’s a really good people-puller and it helps us get the message across about renewable energy.’

The bike, with a motor attached, can generate enough electricity to power mobile phone chargers and radios.