Cambridgeshire County Council will no longer need to charge pupils for Bikeability training for the next three academic years after receiving more than half a million pounds in funding from the Department for Transport (DfT).
Currently, the council charges for the training, but in the next academic year, 4,000 students will receive free training, followed by 4,500 in 2013/14 and 5,000 the year after that, reports the Peterborough Evening Telegraph.
The newspaper says that the change has been made possible through a £540,0000 grant from the DfT, together with £10,000 from the council’s own finances.
Councillor Steve Criswell, Cambridgeshire County Council cabinet member for community infrastructure, explained: “We currently charge for cycle training, but following a wider review of the road safety budget where we have made some spending saving by cutting overheads and with the support from DfT, from the start of the next academic year we will be able to scrap the charge and provide this important road safety advice to youngsters at no cost.”
Despite the Coalition Government last year scrapping Cycling England last year, the body that had launched Bikeability in 2007, Transport Minister Norman Baker has said that the initiative will continue to receive support at least for the duration of the current Parliament, and in October announced funding of £11 million for the 2011/12 academic year.
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.