The Government will soon reveal its Ten Year Transport Plan. Hopefully bodies such as Friends of the Earth, Transport 2000 and CPAG (the Cyclists Public Affairs Group) will have been lobbying transport minister Lord Macdonald to ramp up the governments committment to cycling.
Such traditionally pro-bike groups are joined by the Council for the Protection of Rural England.
The Government’s Ten Year Transport Plan must deliver genuine transport choice and safer roads in the countryside, the Council said yesterday.
"Years of under investment in rural areas has left many without adequate public transport, lacking local services and suffering the effects of speeding or heavy traffic," it warned.
"With billions promised in the Ten Year Plan, Ministers can make a real difference to the everyday lives of rural people," said Paul Hamblin, CPRE’s senior transport officer.
The Council has submitted a comprehensive package of measures to address the problems facing rural areas. Topics include:
A Safer Villages Toolkit to deliver 16,000 villages from the effects of speeding traffic in beneficial ways which are sympathetic to the countryside. Cost £540 million.
A 10-fold increase in the number of communities involved in designating "quiet lanes" with the local authority to develop a safe network which encourages walking and cycling and protects horse riders. Cost £35 million.
Mr Hamblin added: "A 10-year vision for transport should break the trend of people travelling further by car and make it easier for everybody to access services by walking, cycling and high quality public transport.