Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Cycling: Get Britain Cycling in Devon

 The "Get Britain Cycling" inquiry report referred to in an earlier post
Futures Forum: Cycling: national policy outlined
was very positive about Devon County Council's policies on cycling:

Devon highlighted in Get Britain Cycling report

Devon highlighted in Get Britain Cycling report

Posted on: 24 April 2013
Devon has been highlighted in the All Party Parliamentary Group’s “Get Britain Cycling” inquiry report which has been published today (Wednesday 24 April).
Devon County Council’s Head of Highways Lester Willmington addressed the inquiry in Westminster in February to detail how more people have been encouraged to cycle in Devon.
Today’s report is calling for the Prime Minister and Transport Secretary to publicly commit to an action plan, backed by all Government departments to promote cycling and cycle safety. The group has set out its long-term ambition to increase cycle use from less than 2% of journeys in 2011, to 10% of all journeys in 2025, and 25% by 2050.
Devon County Council features in the report for helping to encourage around a 15% growth in average daily cycle trips across the whole county, and over 40% growth in Exeter over the past five years. During this time, countywide traffic levels fell by 1.5% and in Exeter they fell by 5.4%.
One of Devon’s flagship routes, the Exe Estuary Trail, has seen annual cycle trips increase from around 70,000 in 2009 to more than 110,000 by 2012, an increase of 59%. Since 2007 over 20,000 children across Devon have received Bikeability training in the county and funding for 2013 will enable a further 7,000 children to receive training which improves their skills and confidence.
Through its Devon Cycling Strategy, the County Council has also committed to a further £13.9 million investment programme to 2015 to continue development of key cycle routes.
Zsolt Schuller, Devon County Council’s Strategic Sustainable Travel Officer, said: “Investing in cycling makes sense on so many levels. It improves health, its non-polluting, helps ease congestion in our built up areas and boosts the economy. There is a real momentum behind cycling and we’re pleased that the improvements made across Devon have been successful in getting more people cycling more often, and that is recognised in this report.
“There is still, however, a considerable amount of work to do and we are continuing to work with communities to provide new routes and facilities so that more and more people can choose cycling for everyday journeys and for leisure.“
The full “Get Britain Cycling” report is available at http://allpartycycling.org.

The Devon business community is very much behind cycling:

ESBN Exeter  

Devon asked to help Get Britain Cycling

Devon asked to help Get Britain Cycling

Written: 13 March 2013

Devon County Council chiefs have today (Wednesday 27 February) been advising the Government on how to get more people cycling.

Devon was invited to send a representative to Westminster to speak to the All Party Parliamentary Group’s “Get Britain Cycling” inquiry today, following its success with boosting cycling in the county.

Devon County Council has invested over £13.1 million in cycling infrastructure between 2009 and 2012, as well as attracting external funding such as the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, Connect 2 funding from Sustrans and the Big Lottery Fund, and European funding through Cycle West.

The Council’s commitment to cycling was emphasised last July with Cabinet approval for the Devon Cycling Strategy which outlined a further £13.9 million investment programme to 2015.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation, said: “We made a commitment to be a cycling county and we have achieved that – improving infrastructure to make cycling a more realistic option for local people, whether they’re travelling to work or school or cycling in their leisure time. The improvements to our cycle network have made our county an even more attractive destination for visitors, which is helping to support our local economy. We have a number of well-established, high profile routes such as the Tarka Trail, as well as more recently completed routes such as Drake’s Trail, which is part of the European Cycle West routes.”

Devon’s Cycling Strategy is setting out aspirations on how to create better connections between Devon’s 29 Market and Coastal Towns and to make it a feasible option for people to travel by bike where they live, learn, work and play.

The investment made by Devon County Council in cycling in recent years has been recognised with Devon County Council being ranked the best performing county authority in regards to cycling in the National Highways and Transport Public Satisfaction Survey 2012, as well as receiving a number of awards including the Cycling Improvements Awards at the National Transport Awards in 2010, and Best All Round Scheme for Tourism from the Devon Federation of Small Businesses last year.


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