Earlier today MPs discussed the government’s investment in cycling during a Westminster Hall Debate. Execs from British Cycling and CTC welcomed the debate but wish to see more action.
CTC policy director, Roger Geffen MBE, said:
“It’s heartening that once again MPs from across the political spectrum have spoken up for the investment needed to make cycling a safe and normal activity. Cycling is not just for healthy young males, but for people of all ages and abilities. I hope the government will now listen, find the funding, and put in place the design standards that are needed to ensure it is well spent.”
Martin Key, British Cycling’s campaign’s manager, said:
“Today’s debate illustrates how much progress has been made in recent years. Cycling didn’t have much political attention in the past and rare debates like these would be poorly attended and often missed the point.
“Today, we have MPs from all parties and all across the UK representing the very real concerns of their constituents, and British Cycling’s 117,000 members – namely that the vast majority of people actively want to use their bikes more often, but are put off by concerns about safety.”
He added: “A clear message was sent to government today that more investment is needed in segregated infrastructure to make our roads and junctions safer. Does this amount to the kind of political will to deliver the ‘cycling revolution’ promised by the Prime Minister? No. Is it a step forward? Yes. We will keep the pressure on.”
Alex Chalk, MP for Cheltenham, and co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group opened his contribution to the debate saying: “We know we have done a good job with investment in cycling when there are as many women as there are men cycling – we know we have done an excellent job when they are taking their children along with them on their bikes.”
Ruth Cadbury, MP for Brentford and Isleworth, and fellow chair of the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group added to the debate: “We seek a national set of design standards that reflect those that have been created in Wales and in London, to ensure we get good quality space for cycling.”
During the debate the roads and cycling minister Robert Goodwill said that local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) could unlock greater investment in cycling, should they wish to. Most, of course, don’t wish to. As usual from the government cycling is treated as a local issue while motoring is treated as a national issue.