Cyclist Chris Boardman is to become interim national commissioner of the Government’s new cycling and walking body, Active Travel England (ATE), which launched this week.
The full press release can be read here.
The Government is today also announcing £5.5 million of new funding for local authorities, train operators and businesses to encourage various active travel schemes, including:
- a £300,000 top-up to e-cargo bike schemes (more details here)
- £3 million to improve cycling infrastructure around train stations (more details here)
- £2.2 million to explore active travel on prescription schemes (more details here)
ATE will be responsible for driving up the standards of cycling and walking infrastructure and managing the national active travel budget, awarding funding for projects that meet the new national standards set out in 2020. ATE will also begin to inspect, and publish reports on, highway authorities for their performance on active travel, and identify particularly dangerous failings in their highways for cyclists and pedestrians.
As well as approving and inspecting schemes, ATE will help local authorities to train staff in spreading good practice in design, implementation and public engagement. It will be a statutory consultee on major planning applications to ensure that the largest new developments properly cater for pedestrians and cyclists.
Boardman will now lead the ATE team in its work to raise the standards of cycling and walking infrastructure, in line with the principles set out in Gear Change: a bold new vision for walking and cycling.
The new body will be headquartered in York from summer 2022 and preliminary work is already underway, scrutinising councils’ plans for active travel and supporting them to create ambitious schemes that will enable more people to walk, wheel and cycle safely.