Cycling and Walking

Transport – in the House of Commons on 3rd February 2022.

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Photo of Ruth Cadbury Ruth Cadbury Shadow Minister (International Trade)

What plans he has to publish a second cycling and walking investment strategy.

Photo of Trudy Harrison Trudy Harrison Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The Government plan to publish the second cycling and walking investment strategy in the spring.

Photo of Ruth Cadbury Ruth Cadbury Shadow Minister (International Trade)

I thank the Minister for the answer. I am concerned that the Treasury has clearly decided that £2 billion is all the ringfenced funding that will be allocated for cycling and walking, but the Department for Transport commissioned research several years ago that apparently says this £2 billion is only a quarter to a third of what is needed to meet the stated aims of the Government to increase cycling and walking by 2025. Can I ask if she will now publish this research, as a former Transport Minister, Chris Heaton-Harris, repeatedly promised two years ago?

Photo of Trudy Harrison Trudy Harrison Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

I am delighted to confirm that we have now appointed Chris Boardman as the acting CEO of Active Travel England, which I will be meeting after this session.[This section has been corrected on 7 February 2022, column 8MC — read correction] Actually, the £2 billion is an unprecedented amount to be investing in walking and cycling over this Parliament. Our investment is already seeing results: levels of cycling increased by 46% in 2020 compared with 2019. However, I would like to put on record my thanks to the hon. Member for the work she does on the all-party parliamentary group on cycling and walking, which I look forward to joining.

Photo of Desmond Swayne Desmond Swayne Conservative, New Forest West

I cycle for 10 hours a week, and on a narrow forest road I always cycle close to the kerb, because I am a driver too and I want to accommodate drivers. The advice in the new code that I should cycle in the centre of the carriageway is bonkers, isn’t it?

Photo of Trudy Harrison Trudy Harrison Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

I would like to stress that that advice is only on narrow roads, but I am delighted that my right hon. Friend has embraced cycling, because we want to see half of the journeys made in towns and cities walked or cycled by 2030.