Cycling levels in Scotland up 32% since 2003

Cycling to work and school has also increased
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A new report from Cycling Scotland suggests that the country's levels of cycling have risen 32 per cent since 2003, with cycling to work and school contributing heavily.

Edinburgh and Inverness are driving the progress of two wheel travel, with the former posting cycle to work levels of around 12.2 per cent, more than double the national average of 5.6 per cent.

Cycling to school continues to increase, with five per cent of those in primary school indicating that they normally travel by bike to school – locally, cycling to primary school is highest in Highland (10.7%), East Lothian (9.5%) and Stirling (9.2%).

62% of journeys people take in Scotland are less than 5km - the average cycling journey is 4.4km in distance. 

Chief Executive of Cycling Scotland, Keith Irving, commented: “The report, prepared by Cycling Scotland, demonstrates how cycling is truly becoming an everyday activity for more people of all ages and abilities in many places across Scotland. The success in many communities show that it is possible to make a step change in getting people on bikes anywhere in Scotland. Investment in cycling is at record levels and as national and local government continues to invest in cycling, improving health, cutting emissions and tackling inequalities, it is essential we continue to monitor the progress in enabling more people to cycle more. We need action across Scotland to enable the Cycling Action Plan vision of ten per cent of journeys by bike to be reached and today’s report helps demonstrate where we need to renew our efforts.”

The top five stated reasons why people did not cycle to work are said to be; the distance is too far, weather not pleasant, do not own a bike, too many cars on road and traffic travelling too fast.

On cycling casualties, the report says the number of serious injuries on the roads has declined from 311 in 1994 to 148 in 2013 among adults and from 140 to 11 among children. Over the same time period, the number of fatalities has fluctuated between 5 and 13 among adults and 0 and 5 among children. 

The full report, which is full of detailed infographics and finer detail is available to download as a pdf here.

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