Improving public perceptions and expanding diversity: Cycling UK announces new transformative five-year strategy

Cycling UK has announced a new transformative five-year strategy
Cycling UK has outlined its new five-year strategy, which aims to get more people to recognise the benefits of cycling

Cycling UK, the UK’s cycling charity, has outlined its five-year strategy in an announcement this week. The aim; to get more people to recognise the wellbeing, health, and environmental benefits of cycling, even if they don't cycle themselves.

To coincide with the strategy announcement, the charity has also released a film showcasing the positive impact cycling can have on communities across the UK. Working with author and poet Erin Bolens from Leeds and production company Manto Films, the film emphasises how cycling helps everyone. As summarised by Erin in the video, “people who drive, people who walk, people who say they'll cycle one day, even if it's just talk. Children, teenagers, 50 something middle agers, the early starters, the young at hearters. We're all on the same team.”

With five strategic objectives, the charity will focus on improving public perceptions of cycling, boosting the diversity of cycling, making cycling a more positive experience, increasing transport choice, and further raising the profile of the organisation and increasing its charitable impact. 

With cycling becoming another focal point of the culture wars, Cycling UK is aware that it has a responsibility to create a groundswell of wider public support for cycling. This public support will help make our shared road space safer and engage and persuade policymakers to introduce cycling-friendly policies and investment, recognising its potential to build happier, healthier and greener communities.

  • 60% of all car journeys in England are under five miles.[1]
  • Studies have also shown that for every £1 spent, we gain nearly £6 in benefits. One of the highest returns on investment from spending on sport.[2]
  • 77% of the UK agree that it would be better if more people cycled.[3]
  • 65% want roads changed to protect cyclists and pedestrians from cars.[4]

Sarah Mitchell, chief executive of Cycling UK, said:

“The next five years is a pivotal time for us to demonstrate the wider benefits of cycling. As some politicians have sought to reframe cycling as a culture war issue over the past year, using rhetoric to divide all road users, we are acutely aware of our responsibility to remind people of the overwhelming positive impact of cycling. We already know cycling is a fantastic transport option for millions of people across the UK, and we want even more people to see how it can improve public health, boost wellbeing and enhance our environment.

“Cycling UK has delivered decades of community and campaigning work, and we have a proven track record of making change happen. We are proud of the accomplishments we’ve already made to make the UK greener and healthier, and with our new strategy, we are committed to having an even greater impact in the coming years.”

Cycling UK’s five-year strategic objectives:

  1. Improve perceptions of cycling so that everyone sees the benefits
  2. Boost the number and diversity of people who cycle
  3. Make cycling an even more positive experience
  4. Increase transport choice by enabling and encouraging more people to cycle local journeys
  5. Achieve greater impact by becoming the best possible charity we can be

Cycling UK is working to ensure the UK recognises that cycling relates to more than just transport. It can improve public health, the environment, the economy, and so much more. To find out more, head to:

Over the past 146 years, Cycling UK has been a driving force in advocating for the rights of people who cycle, in improving infrastructure, and inspiring people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities to embrace the joys of cycling. Over decades it campaigned for changes to be made to the Highway Code, created 100 Women in Cycling to promote its diversity and opened seven new, long-distance cycle routes. 

As an independent, democratic, and expert-led charity, Cycling UK’s work reflects the commitment of a network of partners, volunteers, and campaigners, including 71,000 members, to make cycling mainstream and to lead people to live happier, healthier, and greener lives through cycling.


Notes to editors

  1. Cycling UK, the national cycling charity, inspires and helps people to cycle and keep cycling, whatever kind of cycling they do or would like to do. Over a century’s experience tells us that cycling is more than useful transport; it makes you feel good, gives you a sense of freedom and creates a better environment for everyone. 
  2. View Cycling UK’s five-year (2024-29) strategy here
  3. View our strategy video on YouTube here





Film credits: 

Video Agency: Manto Films
Director: Matt Rolfe
Producer: Paul Broadie
Editor: Laura Clark
Camera Crew: Harvey Merrin, Josh Richardson

Words by: Erin Bolens

Press contact information

For more information, contact the national Cycling UK Press Office on 01483 238 315, or email