Labour promises to put cycling at the heart of transport policy

Labour promises to put cycling at the heart of transport policy

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On day two of the Labour Party Conference in Manchester, home of British Cycling, both Maria Eagle, Shadow Transport Secretary, and Lilian Greenwood, Shadow Transport Minister, spoke about their commitment to cycling.

Above: MPs on bikes at the annual All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group ride earlier in 2012. Eagle's promises would put cycling at the heart of decision making on transport policy. 

In her speech to the conference, Maria Eagle, promised a proportion of transport budgets for cycling, segregated cycle lanes, more 20mph zones and safe cycling routes to schools.

She also urged the current government to adopt The Times’ Cities Fit for Cycling manifesto points and to bring back targets to reduce the numbers of people killed and seriously injured on the roads.

Ms Eagle also said Labour would provide more facilities for bikes at train stations and on trains themselves.

Earlier in the day, at a fringe event, Lilian Greenwood confirmed to British Cycling that Labour would implement a policy whereby all future road and major transport schemes would be subjected to a Cycling Safety Assessment prior to approval, in the same way that all government policies and spending are subject to an Economic Impact Assessment.

Martin Gibbs, British Cycling Policy and Legal Affairs Director said “Maria Eagle announced the shadow Government’s commitment to Cycling Safety Assessments for all new roads and transport schemes earlier this year after Labour’s Cycling Summit and it is reassuring to hear that this will be in their forthcoming Transport Policy Paper.

"Making sure that cycling is designed into our infrastructure is key to making cycling an easy, safe and appealing choice for everyone. We have been asking the current government to include cycling assessments in all their policy decisions as we believe it is common sense that in order to encourage cycling we must design our infrastructure and transport policies to take account of cycling.

"We are also pleased to see Labour repeating their commitment to allocate a specific budget for cycling to ensure that improvements are made consistently over a number of years and real positive change is seen on the roads.”