A competition to boost active travel to school has been modified to enable children learning at home to take part.
The event, organised by walking and cycling charity Sustrans, will this year include active travel around the pupil’s local area, supervised by a parent or guardian and 30 minutes of physical activity completed at home. Resources can be downloaded by teachers and shared online with pupils, said Sustrans.
Big Pedal 2021 will run from 19 to 30 April 2021 with young people across the UK competing to make the most journeys by cycling, walking, scooting or using a wheelchair.
The theme of this year’s event will be ‘Amazing Journeys’ to encourage pupils to see their local areas from a different perspective and learn about the benefits of active travel.
The competition, now in its eleventh year, is fronted by Dame Sarah Storey, multiple Paralympic gold medal winner in cycling and swimming and Active Travel Commissioner for the Sheffield City Region.
Councillors are calling for up to 25 Manchester city centre roads closed temporarily due to the pandemic to become permanently pedestrianised.
A string of streets within the inner ring road were closed to car traffic under emergency legislation brought in by the government last year to allow people more room to social distance.
Now a number of city centre councillors are pushing for a review to examine whether the closures can be made permanent.
Piccadilly ward councillor Jon-Connor Lyons is set to raise the issue with the council’s transport boss Angeliki Stogia at today’s (WEDS) full council meeting.
“Over the summer last year, we saw parts of the city centre pedestrianised to encourage people to travel safely and actively, whilst supporting Manchester’s small businesses and ensuring accessibility,” Cllr Lyons will say.
“Will the executive member be commissioning a report that looks at the viability of these schemes into the future?”
City centre councillors are keen to capitalise on an increase in public support for quieter roads during lockdowns before the emergency legislation expires on 30 April.
Wed 3 Feb 202
Traffic noise distracts female crickets from listening to the courtship song of the opposite sex and could lead to them selecting a lower quality male to mate with, research suggests. Photograph: Dr Adam Bent/PA
Working from home during Covid-19 has brought noise pollution close to home, whether it’s your partner making calls within earshot or grinding coffee during your Zoom interview. Now research suggests the animal kingdom is also disturbed by the noise of humans and our gadgets.
Since West Country Bylines published my article Blocked by the ‘burdensome estate‘ people from all over the country have contacted me with similar examples of apparent official vandalism. Despite the Department for Transport (DfT) publishing a cycling and walking plan for England which ostensibly “sets out a vision for a travel revolution”, part of that same department still seems set quietly to undermine it.
Organisations seeking to use disused tunnels and bridges to create safe off-road routes claim that 134 structures currently managed as part of the Historical Railways Estate (HRE) are threatened with demolition or infill. Campaigners have circulated this map. Particularly contentious examples include the Queensbury Tunnel in West Yorkshire, and bridges vital for the Alnwick Greenway. In response to these threats, the ‘HRE Group’ – an alliance of engineers, cycling campaigners and greenway developers – has started a petition calling on the DfT to “protect our railway heritage from Highways England’s wrecking ball”.
This short report summarises new and emerging evidence on Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, and how they fit in to wider transport planning goals. Car use is harming us all, particularly marginalised groups and those without cars.
Mark Sutton 17 November, 2020
New data and analysis released by DEKRA Accident Research, covering 12,000 cyclists and e-Scooter users across Europe has found London to have Europe’s highest helmet use.
Covering Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen, Ljubljana, London, Paris, Vienna, Warsaw and Zagreb, the research sought to understand the relationship between cycle use rates, safe infrastructure and helmet use.
One thing was immediately obvious, said the researchers: “When you look at the number of accidents as a ratio of distance traveled, the Netherlands is the second safest country after Denmark in which to ride a bicycle,” says DEKRA accident researcher Luigi Ancona. “Our figures clearly suggest a link between a bicycle-friendly infrastructure, the subjective feeling of safety and the rate of helmet-wearing.”
by Alex Bowden Jan 25 2021
Residents living near Scotland’s planned low emission zones (LEZs) can now apply for up to two £500 grants to purchase a bike, e-bike or public transport vouchers. The LEZ Mobility Fund will also provide micro-businesses and sole traders with £2,500 to replace each non-compliant vehicle with a compliant one, such as an electric vehicle or e-cargo bike.
The Scottish Government is planning to introduce low emission zones in Scotland’s four largest cities: Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Vehicles that do not meet the minimum standard will face a penalty if they enter.
Edinburgh Live reports that in the capital, a citywide zone has been proposed for buses and commercial vehicles, while polluting cars will be subject to a city centre zone. The LEZ was originally due to be introduced this year but have been pushed back due to coronavirus.
New Cycle Parking Strategy for London identifies the problems but under-estimates future demand.
Having a safe place to leave your bike can be as vital to a making a cycle journey as having a safe route. The widespread lack of sufficient cycle parking stands is a barrier to cycling, as TfL’s new cycling parking strategy makes abundantly clear. Without more parking cycling growth will be stymied.
The London Society aims to provide a platform for the debate on how London ought to develop, and to go with our theme of ‘change’ in 2021, we will have a strand of articles on the blog called “Change: Opinions” – polemical pieces that make a case for a radically changing some aspect of the status quo… [Read More]
Many councils have acknowledged that their policies must address the climate emergency. Making far-reaching decisions on transport could make a substantial contribution to cutting carbon emissions but some decisions are easier than others.
From cars to bikes and buses
A key challenge councils must answer is just how much and how quickly should they get people out of their cars and onto bikes and buses? Especially since electric cars will soon become the norm and will be making significant contributions to cutting carbon emissions and some types of air pollution1. Undoubtedly some transport planners will be hoping that this means they won’t have to tackle car use. Unfortunately for them even conservative estimates of what is needed point to the need for some modal shift – a switch towards a more sustainable and less polluting form of transport.