British Cycling welcomes response but urges more people to sign The Times’ petition to ‘Get Britain Cycling’.
British Cycling has welcomed the Government’s initial response to The Times’ online petition to ‘Get Britain Cycling’. The Department for Transport issued a holding statement on Tuesday to every one of the 58,000 people who have already put their name to the e-petition, which was setup by The Times in order to secure a Parliamentary debate on the 18 recommendations made within the Get Britain Cycling report.
The DfT said that it, "takes cycling very seriously" and is committed to "leading the country in getting more people to cycle more safely, more often." It continued: “The Government welcomes the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group (APPCG) inquiry and report. We will look at the recommendations carefully and respond in due course.”
In response to the statement, which can be read in full here, British Cycling’s Director of Policy and Legal Affairs, Martin Gibbs said: “We welcome the response from the Department for Transport and its commitment to leading the country in getting more people cycling, but we continue to support the Times’ aim to secure 100,000 signatures to ensure the ‘Get Britain Cycling’ report receives a full and proper hearing in Parliament.
“The Government’s response sets out what it is doing at the moment but the petition calls for it to go much further, specifically to create a cycling budget of at least £10 per person per year and a statutory requirement that cycling is considered at an early stage of all new transport schemes and developments.”
British Cycling has been a key supporter of the Get Britain Cycling inquiry, including contributions from Chris Boardman. The report makes 18 clear recommendations to the government on what is needed to get the nation cycling with an ambition that at least 10 percent of all journeys should be made by bike by 2025 – a fivefold increase on today’s figures.
The petition currently has over 65,000 signatures, with a minimum of 100,000 needed to secure the possibility of the report’s recommendations being raised in Parliament.
British Cycling’s Chris Boardman, Sir Dave Brailsford and Laura Trott have already thrown their support behind petition
Chris Boardman, who also wrote this open letter to members, cyclists and other interested parties, said: “The Times newspaper has started an e-petition asking for this to happen. The government require at least 100,000 signatures before they will consider holding a debate in parliament. We’re getting there but we need your help to really keep up the momentum on this vital issue.”
Sir Dave Brailsford said: “In April this year a group of MPs published a report about how we can Get Britain Cycling. At the heart of the report is a recommendation for strong political leadership to put cycling at the heart of transport policy.”
Double Olympic champion Laura Trott said: “There are two million people in this country cycling at least once a week. If even 10% of those people signed the petition we’d be well on our way to making the government stand up and listen.”
British Cycling eagerly awaits the full Government response to the report and urges you to sign the petition http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/49196