High quality cycle routes could be funded using the new money
High quality cycle routes could be funded using the new money

£20m more for cycling

Transport minister Norman Baker MP has announced welcome additional funding for cycling in England - but this should just be a start, and CTC is calling for more funding to help Get Britain Cycling.

The £20 million funding will be dedicated to improving infrastructure for cycling. Earlier in the year £15 million was allocated to tackle major junctions and a further £15m for cycle routes and facilities at railways stations.

The new funding brings the total to £50m for this year, which is similar to the annual budget of Cycling England, the previous Government's delivery body for cycling which was dismantled in 2011. The new funding partly derives from the Department of Health - a welcome development in joined up government which the Get Britain Cycling campaign has been calling for.

British Cycling and CTC welcome the announcement of much-needed investment in cycling - it is encouraging to see funding being allocated to improve conditions on the road. We now need to see real leadership right across government to get Britain cycling. If cycling is put at the heart of transport policy - so that all decisions are made with cycling in mind - we can create a cycling nation to rival countries like Denmark."

Statement from CTC and British Cycling

Launching the funding, Transport Minister Norman Baker MP, said, "following the success of the Olympics, there is a huge appetite for more cycling provision from the travelling public and we need to capitalise on this enthusiasm at local and national level. That is why we are investing £20 million in cycling infrastructure and getting councils to bring an end to silo working in their offices."

The additional funding - which will also be administered by Sustrans - comes on the same day that the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) published guidance calling on councils, businesses and schools to promote cycling and walking.

Norman Baker also hinted publicly that there will be a Prime Ministerial announcement in support of walking and cycling in the New Year. Such an announcement would be the sort of leadership that cycling organisations and the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group have been calling for through the Get Britain Cycling campaign - over 80 MPs have so far signed an Early Day Motion calling for an action plan and strong leadership in support of cycling.

Chris Peck