This article was published in 2017, in Newsletter 132.
Firstly, thank you for taking the time to read my contribution. I’d also like to say thank you to all the members and volunteers with the Cambridge Cycling Campaign for all you do. I’ve been very impressed with your work and I am thankful for the improvements in cycling you have campaigned for across Cambridge, many of which have benefited myself and my partner.
I live in Romsey and both myself and my partner cycle to Addenbrooke’s for our work. I first began to cycle regularly when I worked in social care in Glasgow. My job took me to various parts of the city to attend people and so I regularly cycled long journeys every day. Glasgow is a particularly hilly city and doesn’t tend to experience the nicest weather, so I was glad to arrive in the considerably flatter and drier Cambridge.
I am very supportive of cycling and, if elected, wish to extend the benefits much further. Cycling is obviously positive for individuals, for society and for our environment. It frustrates me immensely that cycling remains too intimidating or difficult for many people to take up regularly. If elected I would make reducing many of these barriers a high priority.
I particularly want to see changes that focus immediately on improving the safety of cyclists. I worked in major trauma at Addenbrooke’s and have treated far too many people severely injured whilst cycling.
We recently announced a pledge to invest £2bn in cycling and walking routes. In Cambridge this would be used to further create protected cycling routes that people feel safe using. We need serious investment, far greater than that included in the Government’s recently unveiled strategy. This investment will pay us back many times over.
On transport more widely, it’s time to reverse the trends that have seen the costs of travelling by public transport rise greatly in recent decades. The harmful effects to health of our current system, through air pollution or obesity for example, are too great to ignore any longer.
As well as making the railways public and lowering fares, we would re-regulate local buses and offer free public transport to young people and students along with the elderly. We would champion new electric infrastructure for modern vehicles.
We have a detailed transport strategy for Cambridge and the region, which you can find and read here; https://cambridge.greenparty.org.uk/site/Cambridge/files/Transport_Policy_2017.pdf
Thank you very much.