Today, Warwickshire County Council has supported National Cycle to Work Day with a number of staff ditching their cars for bikes instead.
Organised by Cyclescheme, National Cycle to Work Day is the UK’s biggest cycling commuting event. The campaign has been running for ten years and aims to encourage people all around the country to get on their bikes and get into work one of the best ways possible – on two wheels.
National Cycle to Work Day is an event for everyone, from people who have not been on a bike since their school days to committed cycle commuters. At Warwickshire County Council, an enthusiastic group of staff led the way by cycling to their various places of work. This included Chief Executive Monica Fogarty and Strategic Director Mark Ryder, as well as their Programme Manager for Climate Change Matt Whitehead, who cycled an impressive 90-mile round trip from Gloucestershire for his commute.
In total, staff from Warwickshire County Council cycled a collective total of around 350 miles, saving the equivalent of approximately 144,000 grams of carbon.
This cycling event comes at a timely point, with residents being asked to give their views on important plans for walking and cycling across Warwickshire. With concerns about the rising fuel prices, climate change and personal health, local people are frequently telling the Council that they would like to walk and cycle more but would like better facilities to support this. The Warwickshire Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan consultation, which closes on 14 August, is the perfect opportunity for all Warwickshire residents to tell the Council exactly what they think of the plans to improve walking and cycling provision.
Residents can take part in the consultation here: https://ask.warwickshire.gov.uk/insights-service/lcwip/
The benefits of regular active travel commutes for individuals and the environment are significant:
- Improvements to both physical and mental health
- Save on fuel costs
- Reducing the number of cars on the roads, which in turn reduces congestion and improves air quality
- Contributes to reducing carbon emissions.
Speaking about his gruelling 90-mile round-trip cycle commute, Matt Whitehead, Programme Manager for Climate Change, said: “I was delighted to join colleagues in cycling to work today. I’m a regular cyclist but even so, taking on 45 miles before a day’s work is not something I’d do every day! But it’s a great opportunity to show our support for more people in Warwickshire to take up either cycling or walking as an alternative to car journeys. It’s better for our health and it’s better for the planet.”
Cllr Heather Timms, Warwickshire County Council Portfolio Holder for Environment, Climate & Culture, said: "During lockdown, we know that travel habits changed dramatically, with more people than ever before choosing active travel. Since formal restrictions were lifted and more people have been returning to offices and other workplaces, we know that many of these positive travel trends have been reversed.
“At Warwickshire County Council, we recently launched the #JustOneJourney campaign, which encourages residents to ditch the car for one journey and pursue an active travel alternative and this fits in perfectly with National Cycle to Work Day.
“With the Commonwealth Games Road Races in Warwick just around the corner, there has never been a better time to start getting into cycling and it has been fantastic to see so many of our staff supporting this event today as we strive together for a Warwickshire that is sustainable now and for future generations.”
Find out more about Active Travel in Warwickshire: http://safeactivetravelwcc.co.uk/
Warwickshire County Council is currently consulting on its plans for walking and cycling infrastructure across the county. You can take part in the consultation here: https://ask.warwickshire.gov.uk/insights-service/lcwip/