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£94 Million for Cycling Promised by Government

Prime Minister David Cameron says he wants to start “a cycling revolution”

Photo by Julian Jackson

Photo by Julian Jackson

The UK government is hoping to encourage more people to get on their bikes by investing £94 million in creating and improving England’s cycle network. Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, Newcastle, Bristol, Cambridge, Oxford and Norwich will share £77 million, with four national parks getting a further £17 million.

Prime Minister David Cameron said: “Following our success in the Olympics, the Paralympics and the Tour de France, British cycling is riding high – now we want to see cycling soar.

“Our athletes have shown they are among the best in the world and we want to build on that, taking our cycling success beyond the arena and onto the roads, starting a cycling revolution which will remove the barriers for a new generation of cyclists.”

Major roads often do not have cycle lanes. Photo by Julian Jackson

Major roads often do not have cycle lanes. Photo by Julian Jackson

The intention is to create new cycle routes, improve existing ones, and there is a commitment from the government that cyclists’ needs will be incorporated into road planning from an early stage, as well as a desire to reduce “red tape” that stifles innovation. Many different schemes will be involved, including remaking major junctions to improve their utility for cyclists, putting in cycle height mirrors to aid cyclists’ vision, expanded 20 mph zones, and more dedicated cycle lanes.

Mr Cameron continued, “This Government wants to make it easier and safer for people who already cycle as well as encouraging far more people to take it up and business, local government, developers, road users and the transport sector all have a role to play in helping to achieve this.”

Older riders would feel safer if they were separated from traffic. Photo by Julian Jackson.

Older riders would feel safer if they were separated from traffic. Photo by Julian Jackson.

Some cycling authorities have expressed a little scepticism as the government closed down some projects beneficial to cycling when it got into office, but this seems to be a useful way forward for one of the most efficient and pollution-free transportation methods ever devised.

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