What would coax more of the nation into the saddle: Lower road speed limits? Better facilities? Halfords' survey reveals all...

10 ways to get more Brits on bicycles

Ever wondered how to encourage more people to cycle? If you’re in the bike trade, or run the NHS, or have to put up with congestion on the way into work, you almost certainly have.

Halfords has too and has commissioned a poll of 4,500 adults to unearth what exactly would get more of the nation in the saddle. 

Dedicated cycle lanes top the list, followed by more parking facilities for bikes.

Here’s the full list:

  1. Dedicated cycling lanes on every road (40%)
  2. More places to park and lock bicycles (30%)
  3. Better facilities for cyclists at work (19%)
  4. Tax benefits for cyclists (17%)
  5. New York-style cycle ‘super highways’ (16%)
  6. Compulsory cycling proficiency for all cyclists (16%)
  7. Local cycle safety classes (15%)
  8. Driving licence style accreditation for cyclists (12%)
  9. Better cycle safety products (11%)
  10. Lowering speed limits for cars (10%)

In response to campaigners’ calls for a 10% increase in completely separate cycle routes by 2025, survey respondents said this would lead to less pollution (41%); reduced costs for commuters (38%) and less congestion on the roads (32%). Curiously, almost a third (28%) said an increase in segregated bike routes, such as London’s Superhighway, would in fact lead to more conflict between cyclists and motorists or pedestrians.

Chris Boardman MBE, co-founder of Boardman Bikes and British Cycling Policy Advisor, said: “Health, congestion, pollution, more liveable cites – whatever topic you want to choose, the bicycle can be a large part of the answer. In fact it’s the only form of mechanised transport that actually contributes to our society – the UK gains £590 a year for every extra regular cyclist."

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