Extra cash to get us walking and cycling

Transport minister Andrew Jones
Transport minister Andrew Jones

Wigan is to get a share of a £1.5m windfall for Greater Manchester to spend on getting more of us on our feet and bikes.

The funding will support local projects over three years and form part of a wider government package of more than £300m to boost walking and cycling during the current parliament.

By 2040 the government aims to make this part of everyday life and walking and cycling the natural choice for shorter journeys.

The money which has been given to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority aims tow deliver:

More safety and awareness training for cyclists;

Extra secure cycle storage;

Bike repair and maintenance courses;

Road safety measures;

Mapping information for pedestrians;

Real time bus information through smart phone apps or information at bus stops;

Increased focus on car sharing clubs.

The funding will also target those looking to get back into work because access to transport and the cost of travel often restricts where people can look for work and their ability to attend interviews. They will also benefit from discount bus travel and bike loans.

Transport minister Andrew Jones said: “We are committed to improving how people travel and this investment will ensure that people’s journeys are cheaper, safer and better for the environment.

“It will help people to become more active and better transport planning will reduce congestion on our roads – particularly at peak times. This investment will also help people access jobs, education and training, specifically targeting those looking to get back into work.”

Welcoming the news, Stephen Joseph, chief executive of the Campaign for Better Transport, said: “The evidence suggests these kinds of projects can remove barriers to work, help communities and businesses and tackle transport problems by giving people alternatives to car use.”