Commitment to Cycling

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Funding for cycling: are these crumbs from the table or a turning point?

£20m more for cycling, and new guidance from NICE, but will these have much of an effect? Experience from Europe suggests political will needs to be combined with sustained investment over decades to grow cycling. Chris Peck examines the recent history of funding for cycling.
Sustained funding and political will can create better cycling conditions

£20 million isn't much in transport terms - barely 40p per person. It follows £30m funding announced earlier in the year, bringing the total for 2012 to £50m 'extra' money for England, outside London. 

Although that's far from impressive, it's still an improvement on previous years - and still welcome.

But how does this announcement - and previously announced funds - compare to financial settlements in previous years?

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£20m more for cycling

Transport minister Norman Baker MP has announced welcome additional funding for cycling in England - but this should just be a start, and CTC is calling for more funding to help Get Britain Cycling.
High quality cycle routes could be funded using the new money

The £20 million funding will be dedicated to improving infrastructure for cycling. Earlier in the year £15 million was allocated to tackle major junctions and a further £15m for cycle routes and facilities at railways stations.

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Physical inactivity has "roughly the same impact as smoking" says NICE, so get cycling

Boost public health by getting more people cycling, so says major new guidance from NICE, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. NICE calls on local authorities, businesses and the health sector to help increase physical activity.
CTC's Workplace Challenge is recommended by NICE

NICE has noted that only around a third of adults are physically active enough to benefit their health, while the amount of time spend walking or cycling has fallen over the last 15 years, from almost 13 minutes per day to 11 in 2007. 

Chair of the group which produced the guidance, Dr Harry Rutter, said that the impact of physical inactivity on health was similar to that of smoking and called on councils to make the changes necessary to increase active travel.

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London Assembly demands better cycle infrastructure

The London Assembly Transport Committee is calling on the Mayor to provide much better facilities for cycling, hugely increase the budget, and set a higher target for cycle use.
Games lanes showed how space could be painlessly reallocated from motor traffic

At a time when cycle safety in London is deteriorating, even though cycling levels are increasing, the Committee's report has focused attention on improving the standard of design of facilities for cyclists, reducing the speed of traffic, and rolling out new cycle lanes along Go Dutch principles on London's busiest streets.

The report draws unfavourable comparisons with New York, where reallocation of road space has provided high quality cycling facilities. Cycle use has subsequently boomed while the risk of cycling has continued to fall.

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Get Britain Cycling

The All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group gets Britain cycling
CTC, with Sustrans, British Cycling and other cycling organisations, is campaigning for the Government to show strong leadership to Get Britain Cycling.
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All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group launches 'Get Britain Cycling' inquiry

The All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group (APPCG), a cross-party group of MPs and Peers with an interest in cycling, has launched its 'Get Britain Cycling' inquiry into how to increase levels of cycling.
The Times campaign is 9 months old

The inquiry, which is being funded by News International, will hear evidence from a range of stakeholders involved in promoting cycling and cycle safety. See CTC's written evidence. Oral evidence sessions will take place in January and February 2013. The APPCG's report - which will be drafted by leading transport academic Prof Phil Goodwin - is due to be published in mid-April 2013.

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Big Apple takes a bite out of streets

New York City has been radically shifting space on its main thoroughfares away from cars, providing high quality cycle facilities, more space for pedestrians and better bus networks. Now research is starting to show the economic and social benefits.
New York City has begun to transform major streets

Over the last few years New York has undertaken a major programme of work to improve conditions for walking, cycling and public transport, by removing space from motor traffic. 

Many of the hostile, 5+ lane wide, network of north-south avenues on Manhattan have been transformed, and high quality, wide cycle lanes installed. Removing capacity for motor traffic has resulted in massively reduced casualties, while the improvement to public space has, in some cases, led to improvements in the local economy.

9th Avenue's new design has resulted in:

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Accessible Cycling for people with disabilities

February 2010 saw the launch of a new cycling class specifically for people with disabilities and learning difficulties in Swindon. Since then, the range of bikes has grown and the classes are full.
Cycling For All, disability bikes at the County Ground, Swindon

Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund, we were able to purchase over 20 different specially adapted bikes to be used at the County Ground running track on a weekly basis. What started as a once a week class for the general public turned into a twice a week open class with four additional privately booked sessions per week. This doesn’t include one-off events and summer courses.

How CTC helped provide a perfect cycling solution for one family in Essex

CTC Cycle Champions is unashamedly enthusiastic about getting people back on a bike, often after years and sometimes for the first time ever. Many go on to make cycling a regular part of their daily lives and the benefits are huge. Lee and Emily's story is a great example.
Emily leads a group of mums cycling with their kids

Lee and Emily joined CTC’s Cycle Champions rides after hearing about them from the ACE Health Trainer at Colchester Garrison.

With two young children, lots of family pressures and a tight budget, they were looking for a cheap solution to become fitter that fitted in with their busy lives.

The Cycle Champions rides offered the use of children’s trailers – a perfect solution for Lee and Emily and countless other army and civilian families.

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Government's response to Select Committee branded 'feeble' by CTC

CTC is urging Ministers to show much stronger leadership on encouraging more and safer cycling, after a lamentably weak response to the Commons Transport Select Committee’s inquiry earlier this year on road safety.
The Government's response to the Select Committee inquiry

CTC’s President Jon Snow was one of the witnesses at the inquiry in April this year, along with Times editor James Harding, and CTC’s Vice-President Josie Dew. He used the occasion to make a strong call for leadership on cycling and cycle safety, stressing that “Leadership means joined up Government with all departments working together to further cycling.”

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  • Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
  • President: Jon Snow
  • Chief Executive: Paul Tuohy
  • Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC): A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no.25185. Registered as a charity in England and Wales No 1147607 and in Scotland No SC042541

 

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