A year after Prime Minister David Cameron promised a “cycling revolution” in Britain, Members of Parliament are set to debate the progress being made towards the government implementing the recommendations of last year’s Get Britain Cycling report.
But cycling organisations including the sustainable transport charity, Sustrans, are accusing the government of dragging its heels over publishing its cycling and walking plan.
The debate, due to start in the main chamber of the House of Commons between 11.15 and 11.30am, will be led by MPs Ian Austin and Dr Julian Huppert, co-chairs of the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group which compiled the report, and Steve Birne.
The motion being put before MPs is:
That this House supports the recommendations of the All-Party Parliamentary Cycling Group’s report ‘Get Britain Cycling’; endorses the target of 10 per cent of all journeys being by bike by 2025, and 25 per cent by 2050; and calls on the Government to show strong political leadership, including an annual Cycling Action Plan, sustained funding for cycling and progress towards meeting the report’s recommendations.
Sustrans says it is joined by British Cycling, CTC, Living Streets, the Bicycle Association and London Cycling Campaign in urging the government to publish its cycling and walking plan.
Speaking on behalf of those groups, the Bristol-based charity insists that any such plan must include a commitment to spend of at least £10 per head per year for cycling, that money be set aside for walking, and that support, development and training be given to local authorities.
Claire Francis, head of policy at Sustrans, said: “It appears the government has abandoned its commitment to deliver this country a walking and cycling plan that will ease congestion, boost the economy and improve our health and lifestyle.
“A year after it was promised, we are still waiting for any indication of political will or dedicated investment that will help deliver the cycling revolution the Prime Minister called for.
“In order to transform our local journeys and encourage more people to walk and cycle, we urgently need a plan with a vision for the future, strong targets and a commitment to long-term, consistent funding to deliver it.”
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.