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Don’t backpedal on Gear Change, Cycling UK open letter urges

Don’t backpedal on Gear Change, Cycling UK open letter urges

Cycling UK has this week launched a campaign of direct action, creating a template for people to email their MP urging that the Gear Change…

Wednesday, Oct 19

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Cycling UK has this week launched a campaign of direct action, creating a template for people to email their MP urging that the Gear Change ambition remains undiluted in expected cuts to public spending .

Feared at risk since the departure of semi-cycle-friendly PM Boris Johnson and his advisor Andrew Gilligan, the budget is said by Active Travel England leader Chris Boardman, among others , to fall far short of what may be required to meet long-term goals. Boardman says up to £18 Billion may be needed versus the pot of £3.8 Billion said to be available currently.

“The Halloween budget could be fright night for walking and cycling in England,” starts Cycling UK, pointing toward an expected budget update from the most recently installed Chancellor Jeremy Hunt.

“Instead of increasing the funding and moving up the gears this Halloween, it looks like the government might back-pedal – cutting the active travel budget during a cost-of-living crisis, when people want and need cheaper transport choices,” warns the cycling charity, calling on people to “Help us save the cycling and walking budget.”

Pointing out the various positive return on investment benefits of funding the Gear Change ambition, the organisation believes it to be non-sensical to do anything other than increase, or at the very least maintain the planned spend.

That spend is now being actively managed by the office of Active Travel England, which has already followed through on its plan to deliver cash only to the most ambitious authorities and withdraw it from those […]

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