Charity Cycling UK has criticised the government’s Spring Statement, unveiled by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in the House of Commons today, describing it as “a sticking plaster for the problems we face today”.
Along with raising the threshold at which people start paying National Insurance and pledging to cut the basic rate of income tax before the next general election, the Chancellor announced that he will cut fuel duty by 5p per litre until March 2023, to deal with the rising prices at the pumps.
However, Cycling UK’s head of campaigns Duncan Dollimore says he is disappointed that the Chancellor did not unveil a more “progressive” Spring Statement which focused on alternative, sustainable forms of transport such as cycling, walking and public transport.
“The cost of living crisis has brought the lack of transport alternatives apart from the car into sharp relief, with people paying the penalty at the pump,” Dollimore said.
“The Chancellor’s spring statement shows lessons have not been learned from the past or our current situation, and demonstrates little vision on how to solve our transport problems.
“Now’s the time to plan for the future, to invest in our towns and cities in ways which will unlock our car dependency."
He continued: “Cars have their place, but when 68 percent of journeys under five miles are currently driven – distances easily cycled or in some cases walked – it’s clear there has been a failure to provide suitable transport alternatives.
“A progressive spring statement would have invested in cycling, walking and public transport for the future and not been a sticking plaster for the problems we face today.”
Ryan joined road.cc as a news writer in December 2021. He has written about cycling and some ball-centric sports for various websites, newspapers, magazines and radio. Before returning to writing about cycling full-time, he completed a PhD in History and published a book and numerous academic articles on religion and politics in Victorian Britain and Ireland (though he remained committed to boring his university colleagues and students with endless cycling trivia). He can be found riding his bike very slowly through the Dromara Hills of Co. Down.