'Cycling and Children and Young People: A policy review', by Tim Gill, shows that cycling is a comparatively safe mode of travel. The report makes the case for introducing active measures to encourage children to cycle, including making the built environment more child and cycle friendly, promoting cycling for fun and as a sport, and promoting cycling for girls.
"We know cycling is popular with many children and young people," said Simon Blake, acting director of children's development at the National Children's Bureau.
"We also know that it is good for their health and it encourages them to be independent and adventurous.
"That is why we need to take action by promoting public policy initiatives that will halt the cycling decline."
The report says the use of should be encouraged but stops well short of demanding compulsion. Gill concludes that further investigation is needed into the effectiveness of cycle helmets in reducing injury.
The report will soon be available at http://www.ncb.org.uk