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Long-term ambition “to make walking and cycling the natural choice for shorter journeys by 2040”

The Government today launched its long-awaited cycling and walking investment strategy. In the foreword, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling says that over £1 billion of funding will be made available to local bodies “that may be invested in cycling and walking over the next five years.”

Outlining its aim to double cycling levels by 2025, the Government gave the following breakdown of £1.2bn worth of funding.

  • £50 million to provide cycling proficiency training for further 1.3 million children
  • £101 million to improve cycling infrastructure and expand cycle routes between the city centres, local communities, and key employment and retail sites
  • £85 million to make improvements to 200 sections of roads for cyclists
  • £80 million for safety and awareness training for cyclists, extra secure cycle storage, bike repair, maintenance courses and road safety measures
  • £389.5 million for councils to invest in walking and cycling schemes
  • £476.4 million from local growth funding to support walking and cycling

Grayling commented: “We are making cycling and walking more accessible to everyone because of the substantial health and environmental benefits – it will also be a boost for businesses because a fitter and healthier workforce is more productive.

“We have already tripled spending on cycling since 2010 and we are now publishing a long-term investment plan because we are absolutely committed to increasing levels of cycling and walking.”

Transport Minister Andrew Jones added: “As the days are becoming longer and warmer we want to encourage people to make cycling and walking the natural choice for shorter journeys – improving people’s health, reducing travel costs, cutting congestion and cleaning up the environment in the process.

“Today we have set out our long-term approach to encourage more people to cycle or walk and overcome the barriers which stop them from doing so.”

Roger Geffen MBE, Policy Director at Cycling UK said: "Cycling UK has spent years campaigning for a strong and well-funded Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, so we’re pleased to see it finally published two years after it was initially announced.

“With national as well as local elections now looming, Cycling UK will be doing all we can to build the cross-party support needed to strengthen this investment strategy over time, while supporting councils in making best use of the resources available, as they start bringing this vision to life.”

Among its commitments, the Government is investing £1m in Cycling UK’s Big Bike Revival scheme which provides free bike maintenance and cycling classes.

Chief Executive Paul Tuohy said: “Cycling is a fantastic transport choice, helping you to stay active and healthy as part of your daily routine, and saving you money on travel costs. Cycling UK’s Big Bike Revival will help tens of thousands of people back into cycling by getting your bikes checked over, fixed up and back into use. We are grateful to the Department for Transport for supporting this initiative for this, our third year of national activities to help get more of the UK cycling more often.”

Chief Executive of Sustrans, Xavier Brice, said: “The first ever ‘Cycling and walking investment strategy’ is a significant step forward by the government. There is an overwhelming body of evidence that demonstrates that investment in cycling and walking has many health, social and economic benefits and must be prioritised. The challenge now is to deliver the change needed locally and nationally.”

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the road.cc team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

20 comments

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the little onion [152 posts] 1 month ago
10 likes

£1 billion over 5 years. So £200 million per year. So £3.12 per person, per year. Of which nearly half is related to "local growth funding" which may or may not happen.

 

Compared to the £2.6 billion allocated to the highways agency for the financial year 2018/19 alone, and the £60 billion+ cost of HS2.

 

Not. Good. Enough.

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CygnusX1 [435 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes

Minister of Doublespeak, Chris Grayling, commented (in his head)*: “We are making cycling and walking more accessible to everyone because of our open [car] door policy and by getting pesky non-road-user cyclists off the roads which belong to cars"

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/transport-secretary-chris-...

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/transport-secretary-chris-...

* possibly

 

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Grahamd [393 posts] 1 month ago
6 likes

What ambition. 2025 and 2040! Far too little and way, way too late. Nearly enough time for another generation of diabetics.

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cyclesteffer [249 posts] 1 month ago
8 likes

Wow - even though the cost of cancer and Coronary Heart disease to the NHS costs over £25 Billion PER YEAR, and the report yesterday said cycling can cut these by 50% (with 250,000 people sampled so its  a massively significant study). 

This government likes spending money on things that make people unhealthier! Thats crazy.

 

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Awavey [278 posts] 1 month ago
5 likes

Don't suppose anyone can fact check the "tripled spending on cycling since 2010" claim ? Though I appreciate spending thruppence instead of an old fashioned penny would count  2

But still 2040,sheesh talk about kicking it into the long grass, Elon Musk reckons he will have built a colony on Mars by then

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the little onion [152 posts] 1 month ago
6 likes
Awavey wrote:

Don't suppose anyone can fact check the "tripled spending on cycling since 2010"

 

 I'll have to dig into the figures, but it does sound quite accurate - if only because triple of bugger all is still bugger all.

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kitsunegari [172 posts] 1 month ago
5 likes

It's so sad that our targets are so underwhelming and laughably long in the future.

The government do not give a shit about active travel. This much is clear. Chris Grayling is just about the worst person that could have been put in charge of Transport, for anyone that gives a damn about making our roads both safer and more cycle friendly.

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Eugene-Stryker [7 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes

My local paper recently ran a story on £5.7m funding for a Newbury to Windsor cycle path - the plan is utter nonsense and in places will make cycling less safe (the painted lines onthe A4 out of Newbury will encourage closer passes as evidenced by 'that' Sainsburys lorry and the research here: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/43/1/ce_journalspr-6.pdf).

The trouble is the comments I get are along the lines of ' . . . that is £5.7m that could be spent on filling pot holes or nurses (note the priorities) etc etc'

So if the cycling 'community' complain about £1bn in funding we will never get anywhere. So, rather than spreading this thinly across all local bodies a single place should get it all (preferably in a Tory heartland). When the inevitable benefits are demonstrated, demand for proper funding will come thick and fast.

That's what I reckon!

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ClubSmed [299 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes
Eugene-Stryker wrote:

The trouble is the comments I get are along the lines of ' . . . that is £5.7m that could be spent on filling pot holes or nurses (note the priorities) etc etc'

How much does it cost to fill a nurse? cheeky

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Eugene-Stryker [7 posts] 1 month ago
1 like
ClubSmed wrote:
Eugene-Stryker wrote:

The trouble is the comments I get are along the lines of ' . . . that is £5.7m that could be spent on filling pot holes or nurses (note the priorities) etc etc'

How much does it cost to fill a nurse? cheeky

haha, £12bn and it would take 14 years.

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Man of Lard [324 posts] 1 month ago
1 like
ClubSmed wrote:
Eugene-Stryker wrote:

The trouble is the comments I get are along the lines of ' . . . that is £5.7m that could be spent on filling pot holes or nurses (note the priorities) etc etc'

How much does it cost to fill a nurse? cheeky

I shall plead the Fifth on that one, but the Student Nurses' accommodation was known as "the whorehouse on the hill" by the taxi drivers & when they had a fire alarm, more overnight guests (chaps) emerged than any other demographic... 

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burtthebike [766 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes

Worth one single cheer perhaps, despite its obvious failings.  Just slightly better than nothing, but as other commenters have already pointed out, about a quarter of what is required to achieve its aims, which are anyway so far in the future as to be meaningless.

When the government announces a reversal of funding, with cycling and walking at the top, and building more roads at the bottom, it might be worth three cheers.  Until then this is just pious expressions of intent without, yet again, providing the funding.

I hope this becomes an election issue and the government are exposed for the hypocrites they are.

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BehindTheBikesheds [202 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

large swathes of this won't be for cycling, another big % will be for infra that is just patently crap and ineffective or worse more dangerous.

You only need look at places like Groningen where they are spending €85/head over the next 5 years in a city that already has a high model share for people on bikes to know the £3/head is just never going to make a dent, not when most of that will be earmarked for London and/or designs that are as i described above.

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

"The report shows that the country invests about half a billion euros per year in cycling and reaps a benefit over 60 times as high” – commented ECF health policy officer, Dr. Randy Rzewnicki.

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ConcordeCX [259 posts] 1 month ago
3 likes
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

A farmer spends no more than absolutely necessary to keep his donkeys healthy enough to work and to breed the next generation of workers. Beyond that he doesn't give a shit about them, or their quality of life.

That is the logic behind Tory thinking.

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bigshape [164 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
Awavey wrote:

Elon Musk reckons he will have built a colony on Mars by then

but will he build bike lanes on Mars?

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beezus fufoon [670 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
ConcordeCX wrote:
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

A farmer spends no more than absolutely necessary to keep his donkeys healthy enough to work and to breed the next generation of workers. Beyond that he doesn't give a shit about them, or their quality of life.

That is the logic behind Tory thinking.

surely he will have one "special" donkey though

Avatar
BehindTheBikesheds [202 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
ConcordeCX wrote:
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

A farmer spends no more than absolutely necessary to keep his donkeys healthy enough to work and to breed the next generation of workers. Beyond that he doesn't give a shit about them, or their quality of life.

That is the logic behind Tory thinking.

All part of the FIAT economy, as soon as you sign your new born donkeys name on that bit of paper they are the commodity to be used/abused as they want.

Avatar
brooksby [2142 posts] 1 month ago
1 like
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

large swathes of this won't be for cycling, another big % will be for infra that is just patently crap and ineffective or worse more dangerous.

You only need look at places like Groningen where they are spending €85/head over the next 5 years in a city that already has a high model share for people on bikes to know the £3/head is just never going to make a dent, not when most of that will be earmarked for London and/or designs that are as i described above.

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

"The report shows that the country invests about half a billion euros per year in cycling and reaps a benefit over 60 times as high” – commented ECF health policy officer, Dr. Randy Rzewnicki.

How much of this has never been announced before? How much of it will be reannounced next year? You're right that lots of it will be actually used to improve roads in general rather than cycling-specific stuff IMO.

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BehindTheBikesheds [202 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes

You only need look at some of shit that was accepted by CTC/CUK/Sustrans and was signed off by them such as the disgraceful Bedford 'turbo' roundabout where £300,000 of cycling safety money was spent effectively increasing the speed of motorists through the roundabout and removing making people on bikes from the roads whilst making it more awkward, no more safe and around 6-10 times longer than if they'd sstayed on the road. I mean to make a right turn you have to traverse 4 zebra crossings (2 for each carriageway) then still have to ride off at an angle with speeding motors because the angle has not being made acute enough to reduce max speeds.

and this BS was signed off by the cycling organisations!!

 

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Grahamd [393 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
ConcordeCX wrote:
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/groningen-spending-%E2%82%AC8500000...

when you have a measured €31Billion saving in health alone for a country like the Netherlands due to cycling the thought processes of our government are utterly illogical.

A farmer spends no more than absolutely necessary to keep his donkeys healthy enough to work and to breed the next generation of workers. Beyond that he doesn't give a shit about them, or their quality of life.

That is the logic behind Tory thinking.

Almost, the tories will see which bits they can cut off the donkey whilst expecting ever greater productivity.