A £3.9 million package to boost environmentally-friendly transport and improve accessibility for disabled people has been unveiled by Transport Minister Baroness Kramer.
The money will be invested in improving journeys from ‘door to door’, including support for car clubs, an electrically-powered-cycle scheme pilot, and a campaign to increase the number of children walking to school. 12 mobility centres will also be revamped to provide support for disabled or elderly drivers. Transport Minister Baroness Kramer said:
“This government is making journeys greener, easier and safer. Today’s announcement will help children enjoy healthier journeys to school, provide a greater variety of sustainable transport and will give a helping hand to improve mobility for elderly or disabled people. There is something here for everyone. These schemes will improve the lives of hardworking people across the country and are further demonstration of our commitment to improving access for all.”
The announcement includes:
- £1 million to create a further 15 car club projects across the country giving members affordable access to a shared car without having to own one – the scheme aims to cut the number of car journeys and provide a greater choice of transport options as part of the Car Club Development in England programme.
- Over £1 million to help increase the number of 5 to 10-year-olds who usually walk to school to 55% – the Living Streets project includes activities to increase confidence and safety awareness among children walking to school, and a ‘travel tracker’ so they can log their trips.
- A £1.2 million investment to update 12 mobility centres to help them meet increasing demand for advice and support specifically tailored for disabled and elderly drivers and passengers.
- The launch of a £700,000 pilot that will give cities, rural areas and tourism hotspots the opportunity to bid for funds to trial electric bike sharing schemes.
The announcement comes as research published shows the positive impact of the government’s Bikeability programme, designed to teach primary school children cycle safety and improve confidence.
Children who undertook training under the scheme said their level of confidence has increased, with twice as many correctly answering questions on where to position their bikes when cycling on the road – a key factor for cycle safety.