16 May 2022
Dunne welcomes new government funding for ‘mini-Holland’ cycling study for Shrewsbury

Philip Dunne MP has welcomed Government funding for a new walking and cycling study for Shrewsbury. 19 local authorities will receive a share of £1.5 million for ‘mini-Holland’ feasibility studies, to assess how the areas could be as pedestrian and cycle-friendly as their Dutch city equivalents.  

Further funding from the Government will be made available following the studies’ completion to implement the most promising schemes within the programme. The Government aims to foster towns and cities across the UK which are safe and accessible for cycling and walking to encourage active travel.

The Government’s £200 million Active Travel Fund marks a ‘golden age’ to encourage cycling and walking – enabling communities across the country to get out on their bikes and enjoy cheaper, cleaner and greener travel across their area.

This includes £161 million of funding for 134 schemes across 46 local authorities outside of London to deliver new footways, cycle lanes and pedestrian crossings.

The Government has also confirmed it will inject £35 million to improving the quality, safety and accessibility of the National Cycle Network, a UK-wide network of paths and routes for walking, cycling or wheeling managed by the independent charity Sustrans. The new funding will see 44 off-road-sections of the Network upgraded to ensure they endure for years to come.  

Up to £8 million is also going towards a new programme to accelerate the uptake of e-cycles by offering short and long-term loans of e-cycles. The pilot scheme, which will be delivered by Cycling UK and launched earlier this week in Greater Manchester, will enable those with longer or hillier journeys to cycle and access employment opportunities in a way that is not only more affordable but is easier, faster and good for our planet.  

This announcement is the next phase of an initial £2 billion investment up to 2025 to put in place connected local routes to give people the choice to walk or ride instead of driving – cleaning our air giving people more choice of travel around their local community.

Mr Dunne said:

“As we focus on greener and cheaper travel to slash emissions and address the cost of living, it is vital we provide communities with the infrastructure they need to enjoy active travel.

“That is why I am pleased the Government has chosen Shrewsbury as one of the towns best placed to pitch for a ‘mini-Holland’ active travel scheme as part of the Government’s longstanding commitment to improve the quality, safety and accessibility of walking and cycling routes.

“Providing the infrastructure to boost active, green and cheaper travel not only cleans our air but increases the choice of travel and makes it easier for people to keep active.

“I am also keen to see cycleways extended into rural areas to encourage both travel to work and leisure cycling in Shropshire for residents and to enable growing interest in cycling tourism in the county.”