People cycling

Surrey gets cycling boost from Government

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Out of a central Government pot of £32.9 million Surrey County Council has won £863,000 for new and improved cycling and walking facilities. With at least 80 or so County or equivalent local authorities in England, Surrey has got a decent share.

The investment will see more cycle and walking routes being created across the county, cycle training expanded to include adults, business groups and children who aren’t in education, and the development of ‘Liveable neighbourhoods’. Liveable neighbourhoods are areas that are improved to be more people-centred with infrastructure and schemes such as 20mph zones that make it easier and safer to walk and cycle.  

Cycle maps will also be produced for key routes around the county as well as personalised travel plans for organisations to lessen the need to travel by car.  

Matt Furniss, Cabinet Member for Transport, Infrastructure and Growth said, “We’re delighted that the government has awarded us this funding so we can continue to transform how residents and visitors travel around our county and give them the confidence to walk and cycle safely.  

“With 41% of Surrey’s carbon emissions coming from transport, choosing to travel more sustainably will also mean we can all play our part to become a net zero county by 2050.  

“This funding will complement a range of other schemes we’ve already implemented to improve walking and cycling facilities across Surrey. These include active travel schemes on the A23 in Redhill and Park Road in Stanwell, local cycling and walking plans in Woking, Reigate and Banstead, Spelthorne, Runnymede, Elmbridge, Mole Valley and Waverley, as well as a £50m investment to improve bus services and help grow user numbers.” 

Surrey County Council was awarded £863,224.00 from Active Travel England’s Capability and Ambition fund which helps councils to develop better designed walking and cycling schemes. 

For more details about active travel in Surrey see www.surreycc.gov.uk/activejourneys

HM Government states: “Local councils will benefit from skills training and a boost to green jobs thanks to a £32.9 million scheme launched 2 January 2023, which will enable them to develop thousands of well thought-through local walking and cycling schemes, co-created by the communities that will use them.”

Womens’ safety is a concern: “The measures aim to get more people of all groups walking and cycling and help to address the barriers that exist. Surveys show the number one issue putting women off cycling is how safe they feel on the roads with 79% of women supporting more protected cycle lanes being built. Safety will therefore be the major focus for the new designs and routes.”

National Active Travel Commissioner, Chris Boardman, said: “If we want to enable hundreds of thousands more people to walk, wheel and cycle for everyday trips then we need to deliver high-quality schemes that make it feel easy, fun and safe.”

Xavier Brice, Chief Executive Officer of Sustrans, the charity that makes it easier for people to walk, wheel and cycle, said: “Sustrans is pleased to see this investment in training and community engagement which will ultimately lead to high-quality infrastructure developments across England that help people choose to use their cars less.”

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