This article was published in 2004, in Newsletter 53.
Eight years ago, in the Newsletter (Issue 5, March 1996)
Milton Road ‘Improvements’
The long-debated changes to Milton Road are currently being put in place. The aim is to cut the journey time for the ‘Park & Ride’ buses by putting in a bus lane, thereby encouraging more motorists to leave their cars up at Cowley Road. But, because of a huge campaign against chopping down the trees (together with a change in the political balance at the County Council), this has happened at the expense of the cycle lanes. Cyclists share both ways: with the buses in the bus lane, and with pedestrians on the new ‘shared-use’ cyclepath. This really isn’t convenient for anyone.
Initial reports from several people suggest this is something we should be looking into.
Five years ago, in the Newsletter (Issue 23, April 1996)
Chancellor gives cyclists 12p!
One of the less publicised aspects of Gordon Brown’s recent Budget was that it actually mentioned cycling. We think this is probably the first time this has happened.
A more generous allowance for using a bike for business travel (not travelling to and from work). Previously this has been set by individual agreements with the Inland Revenue, typically at a bit over 6p per mile, though a few employers have paid a much higher rate, comparable with a car allowance, without any tax being charged. The new rate is now specifically authorised at 12p per mile. If your employer pays less than this, you can claim tax relief on the rest. (If you don’t get expenses, that’s worth 2.76p per mile to a basic-rate taxpayer.)
Update: From April 2002, the tax-free cycle mileage rate increased to 20p per mile. Additionally, the Inland Revenue states that ‘if an employer holds a designated “cycle to work day” to promote cycling instead of driving to work they can provide refreshments or a meal for employees who cycled when they arrive at work. A maximum of six cyclist “breakfasts” a year per employee are exempt from tax and NICs [National Insurance contributions].’