The statement describes a range of measures to improve conditions for cyclists. All are important, but we shall give particular priority to encouraging the provision of better and safer routes.
Will the Minister confirm that when county councils make specific reference to cycle proposals in their transport policy programmes the Government will guarantee extra money for that purpose? Will he give some priority—he has indicated that he may do so—to cycle construction standards and to training, especially for children? Is he aware that so far all that we have had from the Government are fine words and no action? As cycling produces so many benefits to the community, when will we see some practical results?
We have given financial support to many experiments in Britain and we have produced the first cycling policy. We have asked counties to include cycling plans in their submissions for grant in their transport policy programmes. Although we cannot guarantee to meet every one, because there is a limit to local government expenditure on transport, we are encouraging them to put cycling plans in, because we wish to help. We have made provision for improving the standard of cycle construction and protecting the consumer. We already support the RoSPA cycle training proficiency scheme for schoolchildren. We are helping the society to improve that scheme.