Cycling & Walking Investment Strategy
Towards the end of April the Department for Transport (DfT) announced a £1.2 billion long-term plan to make cycling and walking the natural choice for shorter journeys in England. It aspires to make cycling and walking the norm by 2040.
The £1.2 billion for the CWIS breaks down as follows:
- £50 million to provide cycling proficiency training for a 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 which the Government expects councils to invest in walking and cycling schemes;
- £476.4 million from Local Growth Funds (LGF) which it expects Local Enterprise Partnerships to contribute to cycling and walking schemes.
Putting pressure on County!
A message from County Councillor & Campaign Member - Max Hunt
Having been re-elected, I am keen to work even harder on cycle provision, infrastructure and safety. I will be monitoring the successful bid by Leicester & Leicestershire Councils to the Sustainable Transport Access Fund, designed to encourage more people to walk or cycle to work, schools and colleges. I am also pressing the County Council to respond positively to the Government's new Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, which I am sure they will.
I would welcome suggestions as to where to make the pitch and make a LCWIP (Local Cycling & Walling Plan) effective - what snags are there and how might we overcome them to get the effects desired by the Strategy? On what should Leicestershire best pitch its bids?
See goo.gl/EALHK0 .
Max Hunt - 58 William St Loughborough LE11 3BZ 07793 369 888
Propensity to Cycle Tool
A Propensity to Cycle Tool (PCT) has been developed by an academic team based at four universities. Using an interactive map of cycling potential across England at area and route level, this provides a visual evidence base to inform cycling investment, complemented with regional data downloads for further analysis. It is available to use at www.pct.bike.
The data highlights just how much more cycling people in England could do, given the right policies and investments. New analysis shows that if English people were as likely as the Dutch to cycle trips of similar length and hilliness, nearly one in five of us would cycle to work.
Parking Protected Cycle Lanes in Leicester?
Mayor of Leicester Sir Peter Soulsby has said he would consider introducing parking protected cycle lanes in the city. Such lanes, which are widely used in North America and Europe, are located between the pavement and car parking lane spaces, with a buffer separating them from the latter. Their location “reduces risk of ‘dooring’ compared to a bike lane and eliminates the risk of a doored bicyclist being run over by a motor vehicle.”
Sir Peter said that some locations in the city might be suitable for a parking protected lane and that "It is a creative, simple and relatively inexpensive method which means the parked cars actually provide a physical barrier to protect cyclists from traffic”. However, Leicester Cycling Campaign Group have questioned whether the city is suited to such infrastructure.
Trans Pennine Trail
By Simon Geller - Deputy Chair, Friends of the Trans-Pennine Trail
If you’ve cycled, hiked or ridden a horse in Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds, York, Barnsley, Chesterfield and many of the towns in between you’ve probably used the Trans Pennine Trail at some point. The Trail links of all these places and has created a green corridor across the North of England - a sort of Northern Greenhouse rather than a Powerhouse.
The Trail is a fantastic achievement and keeping it open requires a lot of work. There are all sorts of threats from people who want to build on it, from tunnels, railway projects, road schemes, housing and industrial development and so on. The Friends of the Trans Pennine Trail work with the TPT Office in Barnsley to help stave off these threats and help to raise funds to improve it. Just recently we have received major funding from the National Grid and private donations to improve accessibility on sections of the Trail. In times of austerity this work is crucial to maintain the integrity of the Trail and make improvements. We are well aware that Trail surfaces are not all they could be and getting them improved is our top priority. In fact, we've worked out that it will take £23 million to bring the Trail up to standard throughout.But to demonstrate to the funding authorities the public support there is for the Trail we need members! Every member we have represents a demonstration of public commitment to the Trail. Membership is cheap and we provide a regular newsletter to
our supporters. But the most important thing is that you show us your support through a small financial contribution.
And now it's even easier to become a Friend, with the updates we've made to the website. Just go to http://www.transpennineTrail.org.uk/friends/ fill in the form, go through to MyDonate and make a small donation and you're done!
Please take a few moments to become a friend and help us continue to make the Trail the best experience it can be for locals and tourists alike
Bicycles Reducing Pollution in China & India
By Paul Brown - Climate News Network
In China everyone used to travel by bicycle, then along came an urban middle class and the cities were choked with private cars. Now the bicycle is making a comeback, and, at least if you live in Hangzhou in Zhejiang province, you don’t even have to own one because the city will provide a bike for you to ride for free.
What began as an experiment to see if it was possible to reduce both air pollution and congestion has become a major success story, not just in Hangzhou but in 175 cities across the country.
Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the Hangzhou Bicycle Service is that it makes a profit. Companies pay for advertisements on the bicycles and on the kiosks where they are stored and rented from. This pays the wages of those who run the scheme.The experiment in Hangzhou started in 2008 with 2,800 bicycles, and there are now plans to scale up to 200,000 due to its popularity.
There are several keys to the scheme’s success. For starters, although a card is required to hire a bicycle, the first hour is free so if you can get to work or a train or bus stop in under an hour you never have to pay. More than 90% of all rides taken are free.
Plus, the organisation provides a cycle park every 300 metres, with attendants nearby to solve any problems. Each attendant runs 35 stands. A central control room keeps an eye on the entire operation, ensuring there are plenty of cycles available where they are needed.
Another reason it works so well is that it is integrated with all other forms of public transport, so the card that you use for bicycle hire also works on buses, the metro, water taxis and trains. Across the city there is a network of bicycle lanes and bicycle traffic signals providing access to every public transport hub. The authorities have boosted the scheme by imposing parking restrictions.
Cycling can cut cancer and heart disease
Based on an item in Cycling UK Cycleclips
A study has found that riding a bike can drastically cut the risk of getting cancer or heart disease. The five-year study was taken from a sample of around 250,000 commuters and compared people who had an active commute with those who are largely sedentary on their way to work.
The study found that cycling to work cut the "risk of death from any cause by 41%, the incidence of cancer by 45% and heart disease by 46%." In total, the participants who cycled to work completed around 30 miles per week and the greater the distance, the greater the health benefits were. See goo.gl/ZkP77K .
More road miles ridden by cyclists in 2016
Based on an item in Cycling UK Cycleclips
The Government has published the latest Road Traffic Estimates for Great Britain in 2016. At 3.5 billion vehicle miles, pedal cycle traffic on roads in 2016 was 23% above the figure ten years before, and 6.3% up on 2015. Although four-fifths of the road cycle miles ridden in 2016 were on minor roads, the largest proportional increase was on ‘A’ roads (up 11.9% on rural ‘A’ roads and 13.6% on urban ‘A’ roads compared to 2015).
Pedal cycle traffic still represents only around 1% of all traffic on roads, though – and car traffic grew by 2% from 2015 to 252.6 billion vehicle miles, the highest annual estimate ever. Van traffic continued to grow more quickly than any other vehicle type, rising 4.7% to 49.1 billion vehicle miles.
Civil compensation changes dropped
The Government has dropped the Prison and Courts Bill (England & Wales) designed to crack down on bogus ‘whiplash’ claims, by increasing the small claims limit for road traffic victims from £1,000 to £5,000.
Given that c.70% of cyclists' claims fall within this bracket, and that it is not possible to recover costs in small claims cases, the move would have affected cyclists disproportionately. Had the measure gone through, cyclists injured by at fault drivers may well have ended up paying most, if not all, of their compensation in legal fees; or decided not to pursue a claim at all.
Shopping Trips down
A National Travel Survey factsheet focusing on shopping trips in England shows that:
- The number of shopping trips per person per year has dropped from 216 in 2002 to 177 in 2015, and that the drop has been larger for females than males
- In 2015, two thirds of shopping trips were made by car or van (about the same as it’s been over the last 10 years).
- Suggests that buying goods online is responsible for the decline in shopping trips – In 2016, 77% of adults (GB) had bought goods or services over the Internet in the past 12 months, compared to 53% of adults in 2008.