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Funding boost for rail cycle provision

07 January 2019

The Department for Transport is to fund new bike parking facilities at stations across the country. The £1.6m of government investment was announced by cycling and walking minister Jesse Norman in December 2018.

Norman said: “Improving cycling access to railway stations is good for cyclists and good for rail users, whether they’re commuters or tourist, and it has terrific knock-on benefits, by improving air quality, reducing obesity and increasing economic productivity.”

The £1.6m will top up £4.08m that has already been made available for the programme in this financial year.

The Cycle Rail Programme has already been backed by almost £36m from the DfT. The programme has improved access to stations for cyclists through a number of initiatives, including cycle hire schemes, new footpaths and safe and secure cycle parking.

Improvements to infrastructure for cyclists in and around railway stations include a new cycle path in Buckinghamshire, which links Aylesbury Station and the National Trust’s Waddesdon Manor.

The programme has already tripled the number of cycle parking spaces at over 500 stations across the country, bringing the total to over 80,000. This includes the creation of Dutch-style cycle parking hubs at major centres, with over 1,100 spaces in St Albans and almost 3,000 spaces at Cambridge station.

The funding is available to Train Operating Companies and the DfT said it will be writing to them in the near future to outline the application process.

Xavier Brice, chief executive of the walking and cycling charity, Sustrans, said: “Everyone should be able to easily access their railway station by bicycle or on foot. This helps people make a healthy start to their journey while reducing local road congestion and car emissions. The increased funding is very much welcome as it will help integrate more train journeys with cycling by improving cycle parking and contributing to safe routes for all to use.”

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