APPGCW report calls for new Highways Act ahead of 2nd Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Cycling and Walking (APPGCW) has released its inquiry report into the Government’s upcoming 2nd Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy (CWIS2).

The report is supported by Brompton Bicycle and makes a wide range of recommendations. These recommendations are based on evidence received from a variety of stakeholders, provided both in virtual sessions and in writing.

One recommendation is the call for the introduction of a new Highways Act. The purpose of which would be to require highway authorities to develop and manage their networks in accordance with the need to achieve the goals of environmental sustainability and improved public health. With a specific emphasis on cycling and walking, the Act would impose on authorities a requirement to improve facilities for active travel as part of any change to the road network.

Ruth Cadbury MP, co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Party Group for Cycling and Walking (APPGCW) said: ‘’It is an incredibly exciting time for active travel; with Gear Change, LTN 1/20 and preparations in motion for the establishment of Active Travel England.

‘’Whilst there is much to be positive about, it is also clear that far more work is needed to realise the potential of active travel and the role it can play in decarbonising our transport network.

‘’This report provides a broad and detailed overview of what is needed to take that next step in delivering wider uptake of cycling and walking – and the many benefits associated.’’

The report also recommends the introduction of national active travel targets consistent with the sector’s goal of Net Zero by 2050. Supported by five-year funding settlements, each transport / highway authority would be enabled to manage and deliver programmes with the certainty of longer-term funding.

The report also outlines the wider role that Active Travel England could and should play in delivering a step change in active travel. The body should be given funding for inclusive projects, research, and the power to act as a mediator between local and central government where required.

Selaine Saxby MP, co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Party Group for Cycling and Walking (APPGCW) said:‘’Since the first Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy (CWIS), the Government has shown significant commitment to growing walking and cycling.

‘’With this in mind, we commissioned this report to help focus on what is needed from CWIS2 to harness that recent progress and better understand the challenges and complexities. The result is an important set of recommendations, which we hope will help to deliver further positive change.’’

Will Butler-Adams OBE, CEO of Brompton Bicycle Ltd, who supported the inquiry, said: “This inquiry by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Cycling and Walking (APPGCW) is a vital piece of work and Brompton are proud to support it. The report rightly focuses on what the Government should consider at this important time to build on the positive developments in active travel.

”We particularly believe that access to e-bikes should be prioritised as they unlock cycling for many more journeys by a wider range of people. Electric bikes are the only type of electric vehicle not to receive a grant or subsidy from the government.”

The full report, along with all recommendations, can be viewed here.

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