“Take your bike and leave public transport for critical workers,” urges Cycling UK

Avoid public transport for local essential journeys and cycle instead says Cycling UK
Following pleas from front line health professionals for people to maintain social distancing after they witnessed shocking images of people crammed on buses and trains, Cycling UK is urging everyone who can to cycle their essential local journeys to help reduce demand on public transport and make it safer for critical workers.
  • Cycling UK calls on everyone to cycle essential local journeys
  • More cycling can reduce demand on public transport making it safer for key workers who have to use it
  • Charity is writing to Government and city mayors asking them actively to encourage cycling for short journeys and provide support measures

As well as advising the public to start cycling their local essential journeys, the national cycling charity is writing to the Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps MP, and calling on the Government actively to promote cycling and walking as a means of transport over buses, trains and tubes for essential short journeys for people who are symptom-free.

Using a bike for local journeys, Cycling UK argues, allows the rider to remain healthy while also avoiding public transport. This has the dual benefit of reducing the risks of contagion to the rider but also helps reduce the risk to key workers and others who have no choice but to use public transport.

The charity is also calling on Government and city mayors across the UK to follow steps taken in cities such as New York and rapidly introduce temporary cycle facilities. This will allow symptom-free members of the public to take up cycling as a healthy and safe way to make their essential journeys.

Matt Mallinder, Cycling UK director said:

“These are extraordinary times, but sometimes the most ordinary of activities can be part of the solution we need.

Now is the time for people to get those bikes out of their sheds and use them on short local journeys.

Matt Mallinder, Cycling UK director

“Now is the time for people to get those bikes out of their sheds and use them on those short local journeys to work or to help a vulnerable person when they might normally take public transport. Do it not just for your own health but also for our frontline workers in the NHS.

“More people cycling will help reduce the demand on public transport and make social distancing easier which will hinder the spread of the virus.

“Cycling can help us all to remain healthy, boost immune systems and also lift our spirits at a time when we could all do with cheering up. Right now this is something we all need.”

The charity would also like to remind people who might need essential maintenance for their bike that following latest government advice, bike shops are still to remain open, however customers must follow public health social distancing and hygiene advice.

Mr Mallinder added, “While we all want to support local business, visit your local bike shops only for essential maintenance and parts – or to buy a bike if you don’t already have one.”


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. www.cyclinguk.org

Press contact information

For more information contact the national Cycling UK Press Office on 01483 238 315, 07786 320 713 or email publicity@cyclinguk.org