Better infrastructure, smarter investment and strong leadership – these are the three points that comprise British Cycling’s #ChooseCycling Charter, launched today. The organisation is urging local authorities to sign up to the charter in the hope that Britain can be transformed into a cycling nation.
The #ChooseCycling Charter has been developed after consultation with almost 20,000 British Cycling members who gave their opinions on the issues that need to be prioritised to make cycling in Britain easier, safer and more appealing.
British Cycling wants to see more segregated cycle tracks and well-connected networks built to agreed standards, and wants to see local and national government working towards allocating five per cent of transport spending to such projects.
They are also calling on politicians, businesses and communities to develop long-term strategies to normalise cycling and make it an easy choice for people.
British Cycling’s campaign manager, Martin Key, said:
“In recent years, we have undoubtedly made great strides in turning Britain into a true cycling nation. However, millions of Brits still don’t consider cycling to be a viable transport option for them or their children, thanks in part to the fact that our towns and cities do not accommodate cycling.
“Given how cycling can help alleviate so many societal problems – the obesity crisis and a rise in conditions such as type 2 diabetes, traffic congestion, air pollution – this is unacceptable. Put simply, our current transport structure is failing our citizens.
“This can change, though. We are giving local authorities the chance to sign up to this charter and deliver on measures which will lead to healthier and more prosperous communities. There are no logical arguments against these aims.”
Jody Cundy, one of Britain’s most experienced Paralympians, who will be competing in Rio later this summer, added:
“Better cycle access would mean that people who aren’t as confident on the roads – for instance those with disabilities who aren’t as stable on a bike – would feel more comfortable in a bike lane because they won’t be competing with traffic.
“If there was a better infrastructure, especially in town and cities where people want to commute, it would make life a lot easier and a lot better. Choosing cycling and moving forward in this way is certainly a good thing.”