Strategy

Title: Active Travel Strategy

Organisation: Department for Transport
Date uploaded: 15th September 2010
Date published/launched: February 2010

The Government's strategy for getting more people walking and cycling more often and more safely.

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Cycling and walking are a very simple way for people to incorporate more physical activity into their lives and are very important for increasing access to jobs and services for many people.

When replacing trips by car they can also help reduce emissions and ease local congestion.

We have, however, some of the lowest rates of walking and particularly cycling in Europe. Only 2% of trips in England are cycled, but in the Netherlands the figure is 26%, and some towns and cities across Europe have even higher levels. We know we can do better: 18% of trips in Cambridge are cycled, London has seen cycling double in less than a decade, and Darlington has achieved a 13% increase in walking and 113% increase in cycling in just three years.

At a time when public finances are coming under increased pressure, we cannot ignore the potential of low-cost, sustainable measures like walking and cycling to contribute to tackling these challenges. In particular, as we are in the grip of an obesity epidemic, we cannot afford to miss the opportunity to get more people walking and cycling.

The evidence is clear: integrated walking and cycling programmes in Local Transport Plans can get more people active and deliver significant benefits, offering high value for money.

We are working with forward thinking local authorities, the NHS and the third sector to provide real-world examples of how investment in relatively low-cost walking and cycling measures can deliver a wide range of benefits.

That means that there is a wealth of evidence and good practice that local authorities and the NHS can use to develop their own walking and cycling programmes in their Local Transport Plans (LTPs).

For more information contact:
Department of Transport Research Team
T: 0300 123 1102

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