Major cities around Britain are still lacking in proper cycling infrastructure and innovative thinking around cycling schemes, says the Faculty of Public Health
Even London, which launched it’s cycle hire scheme recently, still has a long way to go to become a cycling city on a par to Amsterdam, although the scheme has instantly made it a friendlier place for cyclists.
Dr John Middleton, Vice-President of UK Faculty of Public Health, said “The cost of obesity to the nation is around one billion pounds and we have over 40,000 people dying from premature cardiovascular disease every year.”
He went on “With more and more people short on time to get their minimum 30 minute regular exercise five days a week, active travel is almost the ideal answer. If we made cycling to work or school the easy option, we could cut down on these depressing figures considerably.”
The Faculty wants to see similar cycle schemes to be adopted across the country and everyone to be given the chance to see for themselves how easy, fun and beneficial to health cycling really is.
They stress it’s not about spending more money on transport, but investing the existing money into our health by rethinking the way in which budgets are being spent.
Only 2% of all travel in Britain is taken by bike, compared to 54% by car. The capital’s new cycle hire scheme has prompted the Mayor Boris Johnson to hint at a potential new target of 20% of all journeys in London to be made by bike. The scheme is expected to create 40,000 cycle journeys a day in London.