Norwich invited to bid for £6.5m for more cycle improvements

The finished cycle lanes in the road on The Avenues. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The finished cycle lanes in the road on The Avenues. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

Millions of pounds are up for grabs to further boost cycling provision in Norwich.

The city is one of eight invited to bid for £6.5 million of government cash to pay for schemes such as segregated cycle paths and improved junctions.

The funding is part of the Department for Transport (DfT) cycling review announced in September 2017 after 44-year-old mother-of-two Kim Briggs was knocked over and killed by a bicycle courier.

Charlie Alliston, then 18, was travelling at 18mph on a fixed-wheel track bike with no front brakes and was sentenced to 18 months in jail after being found guilty of causing bodily harm by 'wanton and furious driving'.

The review is considering whether a new offence equivalent to causing death by careless or dangerous driving should be introduced for cyclists, as well as improving road safety for cyclists.

The eight cities invited to bid for a share of the £6.5 million fund are Bristol, Leeds, Cambridge, Birmingham, Norwich, Manchester, Newcastle and Oxford.

They are already receiving government support under the Cycle City Ambition scheme.

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The scheme gave rise to the Push the Pedalways programme in Norwich with £14.1 million worth of funding across the city's seven cycle routes.

The first phase focused on the eight mile pink pedalway between the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and Heartsease, while the second included upgrades to the yellow pedalway between Norwich International Airport and Lakenham and the blue pedalway from Sprowston to Wymondham.

Cycling minister Jesse Norman said: 'Everyone should be able to take advantage of the huge health and environmental benefits of cycling.

'While Britain has some of the safest roads in the world, we want to encourage more people to take up cycling.

'This funding, as part of our overall cycling and walking strategy, will help local councils to make their roads safer for everyone.'

The DfT says £1.2 billion is available as part of the strategy over the five-year period to 2021 to boost cycling and walking.

It aims to double cycling activity by 2025, reduce the rate of cyclists killed or seriously injured and reverse the decline in walking.