Scottish cycling rates fall despite hopes for big increase

Picture: JP
Picture: JP
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Cycling rates in Scotland have fallen, in a setback to ministers’ ambitions to quadruple them by 2020.

The proportion of journeys by bike fell to 1.2 per cent last year from 1.4 per cent in 2015, new Scottish Government figures showed. The rate has also stayed below 2 per cent for a decade, in contrast to ministers’ “vision” of increasing it to 10 per cent within four years.

The number of people cycling to work also fell, from 2.6 per cent to 2.2 per cent.

An alliance of 14 groups, including environmental campaigners and the children’s watchdog, called for spending on cycling and walking to be increased significantly.

In a letter to finance secretary Derek Mackay, they demanded the budget for such “active travel” to be boosted to 10 per cent of transport spending by 2020. They claimed only 1.9 per cent of the transport budget went towards building walking and cycling paths last year.