Summit and consultation explore the future of cycling in Essex


Transport bosses, cycling organisations and council chiefs met last week (3 Sept) at the Cycle Essex Summit, to explore the vision for cycling in Essex.

Essex County Council, working in partnership with Active Essex, met with local and national partners to discuss a new cycling strategy for the county at Colchester United’s Weston Homes Community Stadium.

Following the summit, a consultation was launched to hear the views of the public on how cycling in Essex should be developed in the future.

The new Essex Cycling Strategy will outline Essex County Council’s commitment to promoting and enabling cycling in the county. Following consultation, the strategy is likely to be finalised and adopted towards the end of the year.

Councillor Ray Gooding, Essex County Council’s cycling champion, said: “Essex has a fantastic enthusiasm for cycling, fostered by the Olympic Mountain Biking at Hadleigh in 2012 and last year’s stage 3 of the Tour de France.

“We want to build on the success of these events and use them as a springboard for promoting cycling in Essex both as a sport and recreational activity, as well as a sustainable form of transport.

“The Government has made a commitment to making funding available for cycling through the Infrastructure Act and is expected to publish a national cycling strategy shortly.

“We have already made a submission of interest; however it is crucial that we now produce a more detailed cycling strategy of our own so that we are in a prime position to take full advantage of any future funding opportunities.”

Jason Fergus, Director of Active Essex, said: “This Cycle Summit is a key step in recognising the enthusiasm for cycling across the county and we want to see more people getting on their bikes in Essex, more safely and more often.

“In order to support cycling in Essex, we are committed to creating a Cycle Essex brand. We hope this will encourage a far wider proportion of Essex residents to give cycling a try and build upon its popularity as the third most popular sport in Essex.

“We urge partners, residents and clubs to participate in the consultation and share their views so we can create and sustain a real cycling legacy for Essex.”

Partners in attendance at the summit included the British Cycling Federation, Sport England, Sustrans, Essex Police, C2C, Abellio Greater Anglia, the Department for Transport and representatives of various local borough, district and city councils.

Road safety teams in Essex, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock provide training to ensure that cycling continues to be a safe activity, minimising risk to cyclists themselves and other road users.

Click here to take part in the consultation and view the draft strategy.

7 September 2015

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