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Scotland's Cycling, Walking & Safer Streets scheme saved as minister confirms funding

Lobbying by Sustrans and others help's persuade Finance Secretary to ringfence scheme...

Scotland’s Finance Secretary, John Swinney, has confirmed that money set aside for the country’s Cycling, Walking and Safer Streets (CWSS) scheme will continue to be ringfenced, although the amount available will be reduced from £9 million to £7.5 million.

There had been fears that the scheme, which helps provide funding to local authorities for suitable projects, would fall victim to spending cuts after Mr Swinney failed to make reference to it during his budget speech last November.

The Scottish National Party politician revealed the news in a letter to the Scottish Parliament’s Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change Committee (TICC), says Sustrans, the sustainable transport charity, which led efforts to urge the minister to continue to ringfence funds for CWSS.

John Lauder, Director of Sustrans Scotland commented: “We commend this real commitment by Mr Swinney, the TICC Committee and COSLA to improving the levels of physical activity in Scotland and therefore the health of the population. Athough the fund has been reduced in size, it has not been hit as hard as other areas. We’ve already seen how investing in walking and cycling can reap real rewards and this means we can continue to build on that."

News that money set aside for CWSS will still benefit from ringfencing comes just days after we reported here on about the continuing row in Scotland over the Holyrood government’s intransigence over the failure to incorporate provisions for cyclists, walkers and other non-motorists to cross an upgraded section of the A9 between Perth and Inverness at Crubenmore.

Simon has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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