Generous donors raise over £15,000 for Camcycle’s work for Spaces to Breathe

Big Give 2020 - £15,490 raisedCamcycle would like to thank Cambridge residents who have helped us raise £15,490 in the Big Give Christmas Challenge, a national match-funding campaign supporting 764 charities across the UK. Nearly 100 local people donated to help Camcycle extend our Spaces to Breathe campaign in 2021 to continue the work for more space for safe walking and cycling during the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.

Spaces to Breathe has helped local communities turn their ideas for active travel improvements into real-life experiments as part of Cambridgeshire County Council’s Covid-19 walking and cycling schemes. Cambridgeshire and Peterborough successfully gained £2.3 million from the Department for Transport for the community-led ideas and the county council aims to install more trial measures in the new year. The measures are intended to facilitate social distancing and to encourage more people to travel by sustainable transport.

Current schemes (some of which have been delivered by the Greater Cambridge Partnership) include the closures to through-traffic on Carlyle Road, Storey’s Way and Nightingale Avenue, and the 24-hour bus gates on Mill Road and Silver Street. Gillian Moore, who uses the road to shop by cycle at Cambridge Market, said, “I’m very pleased about the current closure [to through traffic] of Silver Street because it’s a narrow street and quite dangerous when cars are rushing along it, so I do feel safer now.”

As part of the Spaces to Breathe campaign, Camcycle gathered hundreds of suggestions from local people about where they would like to see changes to their streets to enable safer walking, cycling, shopping and recreation. Some of these ideas have already been implemented and others are forming the basis of ongoing efforts to improve streets for local communities. Camcycle is also calling for ‘Quick-CAM’ schemes of temporary measures to connect up the cycling and walking network and create new safe routes across Cambridge and beyond. For those using e-bikes, these routes could provide direct links to shops and employment and prove much quicker than travelling by car. Camcycle’s recommended Quick-CAM routes include Cambourne to Addenbrooke’s and Ely to Cambridge.

In 2021, Camcycle would like to see many of the temporary trials extended and successful schemes made permanent. The charity is calling for an extension of the Mill Road bus gate trial, with some additional changes made along the road, as this scheme has made a huge difference to air quality, social interaction and pedestrian safety along the street.

Camcycle’s Executive Director, Roxanne De Beaux, said:

“Thank you to everyone who has supported Camcycle via the Big Give this December and to those who continue to work for better and safer cycling and walking in their own neighbourhoods. The Covid-19 pandemic has presented many challenges, but it has also enabled people to reimagine and reprioritise their way of life, communities, local streets and transport options. Camcycle has worked with more residents’ associations and local groups than ever this year and this new funding will help us empower even more people to work for safe cycling and walking in 2021 in the places where they live, work, shop and visit.”