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- 21 August 2013 00:00
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Prime Minister David Cameron has confirmed £94 million of funding to encourage more people to use bikes in England across eight major cities and four national parks.
Exactly £77 million will be divided between the eight cities of Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, Newcastle, Bristol, Cambridge, Oxford and Norwich.
Meanwhile the four national parks of New Forest, Peak District, South Downs and Dartmoor will each share a slice of £17 million funding.
With local contributions, the total new funding for cycling is £148 million between now and 2015.
"Following our success in the Olympics, the Paralympics and the Tour de France, British cycling is riding high - now we want to see cycling soar,” said the Prime Minister.
"Our athletes have shown they are among the best in the world and we want to build on that, taking our cycling success beyond the arena and onto the roads, starting a cycling revolution which will remove the barriers for a new generation of cyclists.
"This Government wants to make it easier and safer for people who already cycle as well as encouraging far more people to take it up and business, local government, developers, road users and the transport sector all have a role to play in helping to achieve this.”
The announcement includes a commitment from the Government to cut red tape that can stifle cycle-friendly road design and to encourage changes to the way roads are built or altered.
Councils will be expected to up their game to deliver infrastructure that takes cycling into account from the design stage in a move that has been welcomed by British Cycling.
"British Cycling has taken the lead role in campaigning for cycle-proofing as a means of sustaining the substantial gains we have made in getting more people on bikes,” said British Cycling President Brian Cookson.
"So it is very encouraging that Mr Cameron has shown leadership by recognising that better provision for people who want to travel by bike is fundamental to modern transport policy.”
The commitment to improved cycling facilities is intended to put Britain on a level-footing with countries known for higher levels of cycling like Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands.