MPs to debate Government investment in cycling
MPs are called to debate “Government investment in cycling” – will yours be attending?
This Wednesday (3rd February) from 4.30pm your MP will have the opportunity to participate in a ‘Government investment in cycling’ debate at Westminster Hall, proposed by Bolton West MP Chris Green. Please use one of the links below to urge your MP to attend this debate so they can ask the Government to make a meaningful investment in cycling.
In April of last year, during the build-up to the general election, David Cameron stated his aim was to “double cycling by 2025” and “increase spending further to £10 per person per year” – the initial investment level recommended by the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group’s “Get Britain Cycling” report which has since been supported by the House of Commons.
However, the chancellor’s Autumn Statement in November only allocated £300 million for cycling (and walking) in England for the rest of this parliament – a paltry £1.39 per person per year. In contrast, new road building has been allocated £15 billion over the same 5 year period. This is especially disappointing as building new roads has been shown to encourage more car journeys which would lead to more unhealthy lifestyles, congestion and pollution.
Greater Manchester Cycling Campaign’s “Vision for 2040” document calls for an investment of £20 per person per year, to build a GM-wide network of safe cycling routes that enable people of all ages and abilities to cycle without having to mix with large volumes of motorised traffic.
A recent British Cycling report suggested that achieving Danish levels of cycling in the UK would save us £17 billion per year in healthcare costs alone and numerous Government reports have stated that investing in cycling provides excellent value, with over five pounds of benefit returned for every pound invested.
With the Government due to announce the first ever Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy this summer, it is imperative that we all do everything we can to highlight the economic benefits that more cycling would deliver, so please contact your MP now and urge them to participate in Wednesday’s debate.
You can use this CTC system to send your MP a pre-configured message or, if you have a couple of spare minutes, please contact your MP directly or use the WriteToThem website to send your MP a more personalised message.
Some points you may wish to mention…
- Active travel – cycling and walking – is the best way to encourage daily exercise and save the NHS money from diseases caused by inactive lifestyles.
- More cycling benefits everyone – including those who don’t cycle – by reducing congestion, pollution and healthcare costs.
- Reducing motor traffic levels by 10% is sufficient to alleviate congestion, and this could easily be achieved if more people felt able to cycle for their local journeys.
- The UK already faces large fines for air pollution, and increasing cycle use is essential if we are to comply with air quality requirements in future.
- Enabling children to cycle to school gives them independence and frees up parents’ time.