British Cycling welcomes the news that an additional £42million will be added to the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) for cycling infrastructure.
This is in addition to the £50million already announced this year to improve dangerous junctions and roads. Cycling infrastructure designed to the standards in the Netherlands and Denmark is essential to creating a culture of more mutual respect on the roads and reducing conflict. We welcome all efforts to improve cycling.
The money will go further through match funding from local authorities who bid for the LSTF funding, and from private firms involved in any new schemes.
However, it is an insubstantial amount compared with the £1billion to be spent on improving road schemes that will have little impact on cyclists, and the loss of revenue from scrapping the fuel duty rise, due to come into effect in January, which would have raised £1.5billion in public funding.
It also indicates that cycling is seen as a separate activity, rather than something that at the heart of government policy, which is something that British Cycling has called on the government to do, for some time. Whilst funding earmarked for cycling is good, cycling still needs to be considered when implementing all new and updated road schemes.
Ruth Jackson, Campaigns Manager, said “We are pleased that the government is starting to take cycling seriously and investing in improving conditions on the roads. But until cycling is put at the heart of government policy, this country will continue to fall short of creating a true cycling nation that can rival countries like Denmark and the Netherlands.”