businesscycle - a partnership between Business in the Community, Transport for London, British Cycling, Cycle to Work Alliance and the Department for Transport aspires to a return to cycling’s halcyon days and believes UK businesses have a key role to play in influencing this change.
We are not having the success of The Netherlands or Denmark yet - but we have every reason to believe that through working together and engaging UK employees (that's almost 30 million of us) we can make a real difference. We acknowledge that it's not all within our gift and that for all the organisational, cultural and behavioural changes we can influence we still need radical political and infrastructural changes. Our cities and towns have to be developed in such a way that cycling is an integral part of the solution not the marginalised activity it has become in the UK.
However, we don't intend to sit back and wait for changes to happen - businesscycle is part of the solution and we aim to influence behavioural change and increase cycling for work purposes whilst also working collaboratively to ensure that the hard factors are dealt with too.
Whilst there is a lot to be positive about in terms of cycling, it is also interesting to note that car use and car purchase are on the decrease in the UK (DfT 2011) mainly due to the economic situation so again this is another factor in considering that the time feels right to do all we can to influence further travel behavioural change towards cycling.
There is of course a huge downside to the economic situation in that a recent Sustrans report suggests that nearly half of all households in England could already be struggling with the costs of car ownership. For too long our transport system has focused on the car to the detriment of other forms of transport meaning poor walking and cycling environments leaving people isolated. Bringing cycling back into the frame will help community cohesion and bring more opportunities to people.
Sustrans' report 'Locked out: Tackling Transport Poverty in England