The long winter may have dented the sales figures of nationwide businesses like Greggs, but it didn't stop cycle commuters saddling up, according to the latest statistics from the Cycle Work Alliance.
Figures from the first quarter of this year saw a significant 19.3 per cent increase in take up of C2W, compared with Q1 2012. The scheme encouraged over 15,000 new cyclists to commute to work by bicycle, a figure that is 'unprecedented' for the first three months of the year, according to the Alliance – consisting of Cyclescheme, Cycle Solutions, Evans Cycles and Halfords.
The Government-supported cycle to work scheme, which supports employees with the cost of a new bike, remains a proven, affordable and effective way of increasing cycling uptake that proves the appetite for cycling is there in the UK population, the Alliance added.
“We’re thrilled that the British population has braved the terrible winter weather and is increasingly seeing cycling as an attractive form of commuter transport," said Keith Scott, head of business services at Halfords, and a member of the Alliance.
"The first quarter of any year is the most difficult time for encouraging new cyclists to get bikes and start cycling to work. These results are therefore hugely welcome, and are demonstrative of the scheme’s proven ability in increasing the number of people who commute to work by bike.
"We can now look forward to summer, during which we expect the scheme will continue to play a vital role in getting Britain cycling.”