Campaigners slam 'desperate' cycling and walking strategy


Cycling campaigners have slammed the Government’s investment strategy for cycling and walking as ‘a desperate attempt by officials to big up the pittance made available by ministers’.

Last year the Government said its Autumn Statement ‘commits more than £300m to cycling investment between 2015-16 and 2020-21’.

However the Department for Transport’s (DfT) draft Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, published last month, shares this funding across both modes and appears to dilute the commitment further.

The document’s account of the £300m financial resources for both modes over the period includes spending that the DfT itself describes as ‘unallocated’, as well as funds that were announced previously.

The Government's cycling investment includes Bikeability training

Cycling UK policy director Roger Geffen told Transport Network: ‘Although the Government’s so-called “investment” strategy opens with an admirable ambition to normalise cycling and walking by 2040, its spending plans are totally out of kilter with this aim. Spending on trunk roads and motorways is set to sky-rocket, while cycle investment plummets.

‘Hence this document is little more than a desperate attempt by officials to “big up” the pittance made available by ministers. I see no sign that the sums involved, or the way DfT plans to spend these, are remotely consistent with their entirely laudable aims.’

Breakdown of '£300m'

A DfT spokesperson told Transport Network that section 5.6 of the strategy provides a breakdown of the £300m funding.

This sets out £50m for ‘Bikeability’ training, £101m under the ‘Cycle Ambition Cities’ programme, £85m via Highways England, and £80m revenue funding from the Access Fund that succeeded the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF).

Both the Cycle Ambition Cities funding and Highways England funding for cycling schemes were announced before the Autumn Statement.

The DfT told Transport Network that the strategy’s reference to the Access Fund ‘makes clear that all the successful projects will have to support cycling and/or walking in order to receive funding.’

However, the fund is not limited to cycling and walking schemes and the document describes the access revenue cash as ‘unallocated funding’.

Although guidance for the first £20m of the Access Fund says 'all bids must demonstrate some level of focus on walking and cycling’, it makes clear that bids without ‘a strong or very strong focus on cycling and walking’ are still eligible.

Other criteria for funding includes articulating ‘a future strategic vision for sustainable travel in relation to accessing jobs, skills, education and training’.

Criteria for the remaining £60m revenue funding have not been published. The DfT told Transport Network that these will be announced later this year.

A spokesman for Highways England said that, according to the company’s delivery plan, £78m over four years will be used to improve conditions for those cycling alongside and crossing the strategic road network, while a further £20m would be ‘specifically targeted at improving facilities to provide a more accessible and integrated network’.

He acknowledged that it was hard to say how much of the £20m will benefit cyclists directly but suggested that by improving accessibility and integration it would benefit cyclists, as well as other groups.


Also see

Register now for full access

Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

comments powered by Disqus
highways jobs

Senior Team Leader

Redbridge London Borough Council
£35,992 to £38,994 per annum inclusive
Looking for individuals with initiative, evidence of experience in managing a street cleansing service and motivating... Redbridge, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Redbridge London Borough Council

Information Management Officer x 2 Jobs

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£24,799 - £26,317
Looking for better and smarter ways to operate and you will play a key role working across a broad range of service... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Graduate Engineer

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£24,313 - £28,785 per annum
This is an exciting new opportunity in the Highway Services team to play a pivotal role in creating a safe and... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Chief Fire Officer

West Sussex County Council
Competitive Salary plus Financial Support for Recruitment and Retention
We are looking for an exceptional individual who can lead our Fire & Rescue Service Chichester, West Sussex
Recuriter: West Sussex County Council

School Crossing Patrol

Brent Council
£21,591 - £22,377 p.a. inc. pro rata.
Looking for someone that is friendly, has great communication skills and enjoys working with children. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Engineer (Highway Design)

Darlington Borough Council
£31,371 - £33,799
Looking to employ an experienced person within the Highway Design team to meet the challenge of enabling development... Darlington, Durham
Recuriter: Darlington Borough Council

Project Manager – Major Maintenance and Infrastructure Projects 

Liverpool City Council
£42,683 - £47,491 
The successful candidate will ensure that effective procurement and delivery of highways maintenance and improvement. Liverpool, Merseyside
Recuriter: Liverpool City Council

Green Space Development Manager

Camden London Borough Council
£45,504 - £52,786
The successful candidate will join a dynamic, multi-disciplinary team and contribute to our commitment to deliver for... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Green Space Project Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£40,829 - £47,360
The successful candidate will join a dynamic, multi-disciplinary team and contribute to our commitment to deliver for the people of Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Senior Principal Planning Officer - Fixed Term

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£39.774 - £42.684
Looking for key members of the team that will be instrumental in transforming the Borough and opportunities available for residents.  Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Career Grade Planner

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£27228 - £36711
In this role you will deal primarily with small-scale planning applications covering a wide range of planning issues. Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Career Grade Planning Officer

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£27.228 - £36.711
We offer a great opportunity to develop your career with a positive approach to development and a desire to put... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Director of Place and Communities

Ashfield District Council
As the Director for Place and Communities you will provide strategic and operational leadership across a range of key services including Waste... Nottinghamshire
Recuriter: Ashfield District Council

Highways Operative - 3 Jobs

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£18,426 - £21,166 (plus 20% enhancement if working in the night team)
You will be responsible for providing effective maintenance and development of the Kirklees road network carrying out a range of highway works. Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Rights of Way Officer

Cambridgeshire County Council
£26,470 - £28,221
The purpose of the role is to implement and advise on the maintenance, protection, improvement and promotion of access... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Road Safety and Sustainable Transport Assistant

Telford & Wrekin Council
£11.41 - £12.35 per hour
Are you passionate about Road Safety, and want to help educate road users and develop their skills? Wrekin, Telford
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council


Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
As an Engineer, you will be required to lead the delivery of a wide range of highway improvements and maintenance projects to... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Inspector / Senior Inspector

City of Bradford MDC
£21,166 - £31,371 pa
This is an opportunity to join the Highway Maintenance team who have responsibility for maintenance of around 2,000km of adopted road network. Bradford, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of Bradford MDC

Head of Highways Infrastructure

Leeds City Council
£72,397 - £79,637
Seeking an exceptional candidate for the position of Head of Highways Infrastructure to lead on the authority’s duty to... Leeds, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Leeds City Council

Definitive Map Manager

Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
This role is based within the Highways Service at Cambridgeshire County Council and provides an unusual and... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council