A puncture repair kit announced to kit out a repair workshop

david-cameron-on-his-bike-with-helmetThe Cycle Embassy have really said it here – an extra 90p per person to the £2.20 per head the UK spends on cycle provision.  This isn’t ongoing funding either, this is a handout made up of bits and pieces we’ve already been given/promised.

Where we live in Ely, we won’t see a penny of this.

It’s one puncture repair kit donated to kit out an entire workshop. Unrealistic, token and 100% politically motivated. The people who don’t want to see money spent on cycle provision will see it as a waste of money anyway, and those who do want it will barely benefit.

Until there is a minimum standard set up for all roads (like they have in the Netherlands) and legislation to protect all road users like the proposed proportional responsibility, there is only empty promises and dirty bandages.

You might have noticed when this was announced, it wasn’t listed along side the £500 million they announced for electric cars, or that £28 billion was to be spent on the road network. Lets not mention high speed rail links so expensive that only super rich could use them – it’s still cheaper to fly anywhere in Europe than to take a train from one side of the country to the other.

Encouraging take up on cycling for short journeys has so many more benefits to health, over crowding, quality of life and cost of infrastructure (cars in any form will damage the roads faster than bikes). They are literally pouring our money down the drain.

So no, this £94 million is not only disappointing but it’s insulting and quite possibly just as damaging and unhealthy as the network we already have.

We need to stop talking in terms of money and think about a change in attitude – just like we had to in order to give women the vote, or to impact racial and sexual discrimination. It’s simply not acceptable to have so many deaths that could so easily be prevented both actually on the road and caused by pollution and heart disease.

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