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MPs to push for more walking and cycling

The Transport Select Committee has launched an inquiry to consider ways of increasing active travel across England as it highlights low take-up compared to Europe.

The report says local authorities face berries when trying to implement cycling and walking programmes.

The report says local authorities face berries when trying to implement cycling and walking programmes.

The inquiry will look at issues including lessons to be learnt from international approaches in supporting active travel and whether more work on funding and infrastructure is needed in the UK.

Chair of the Transport Committee, Lilian Greenwood MP, said: “Walking and cycling are both extremely important modes of sustainable transport. The health benefits, as well as their contribution to cutting air pollution and congestion on the roads, are clear. However, take-up of active travel is disappointingly low in this country, with significant variations from region to region. Overall, we compare very unfavourably with many of our European neighbours. So why are we so slow to get active?

“Is local and central Government policy and funding appropriate? Is more needed than just building the infrastructure, such as cycle lanes? How can we promote behavioural change so that walking or cycling become the default for first and last mile journeys? Those are the key questions at the heart of our inquiry, which I hope it will bring renewed attention to this issue.”

The inquiry follows a report published by sustainable transport charity Sustrans, which runs the National Cycle Network in the UK, earlier this year, which suggests there is strong evidence that cycling and walking programmes have a key role to play in helping solve our air quality crisis, but says local authorities face many barriers when trying to implement such programmes.

Written submissions to the Transport Select Committee inquiry can be made here. The deadline is 11 October 2018.

 

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.