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Bikeability ring-fenced for current Parliament

"Larger funding streams" promised for sustainable transport...

As the abolition of Cycling England is confirmed today, the Department for Transport has told that the Bikeability cycle-training scheme will continue in its present form the duration of the current Parliament, with its funding ring-fenced.

The operation of the scheme will now be brought under wing of the DfT but there are no guarantees about its long term future, or that of the cycling towns and cycling city established under Cycling England.

A DfT spokeswoman explained that details of funding for the new Local Sustainable Transport Fund will be announced as part of the Comprehensive Spending Revue on October 20.

So far not much is known about how the new Fund will operate. Local Transport Minister Norman Baker said:

"It is at a local level that most can be done to change patterns of behaviour and encourage more sustainable travel, especially for short journeys.

"And in an environment of tighter budgets and greater local flexibility, the Government is determined to reduce bureaucracy and make local transport funding more efficient.

“That is why we intend to pool the myriad of centrally funded local transport grants, to create fewer but larger funding streams, largely formula based, and a new Local Sustainable Transport Fund."

The fear for many, however, could be that if its promotion is effectively devolved to a local level, cycling will slide down the political agenda in those areas where it is not considered by local politicians to be a vote-winner.

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Jon Burrage | 13 years ago

I agree completely - my manager i an older guy, ex policeman who now heads up a department that consists of my cycle training team among other road safety bits and bobs. In my second month on the job he said "I dont believe we should have children cycling on the road, it isnt safe" he went on to say "Really all cyclists should ride on their paths or not at all"

This from the guy who leads a department with a cycle training team.

It brought me down to earth to say the least.

G-bitch | 13 years ago

That last paragraph says it all - there's needs to be a diktat from government for all local authorities to pull their finger out and prioritise cycling and sustainable transport. Too many authorities are ruled politically by old men who drive everywhere and want every last penny to go into highway maintenance and improvement.

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