Showing pedal power through cycling campaign

Young supporters adding their message to the bicycle at the Canal Festival

Young supporters adding their message to the bicycle at the Canal Festival

Nearly 100 people from the Leighton Buzzard area have come together to demand more investment for better cycling provision in the town.

Around 90 people at the Linslade Canal Festival wrote a message to Central Bedfordshire Councillors telling them that more needs to be done to help people to choose the bicycle over the car for journeys in and around the town.

Young and old alike flocked to the Leighton Buzzcycles stand at the event to add their message tag to a special bicycle.

The cycle club and campaigning group have now gathered up all the messages and will be delivering them to local councillors along with a clear message “if you want to reduce traffic congestion, help people stay active and healthy, bring more trade into the town and meet carbon reduction targets, spend more money on encouraging more people to cycle”

Leighton Buzzcycles chairman, Peter Bate, said: “A few years ago, when we had Cycling Town funding from Central Government, money was spent to put in some initital, much-needed, cycling infrastructure. But the job is not yet finished. Many people are still concerned about cycling on our busy roads with their fast traffic, parents are still too nervous to let their children cycle to school, and too many shopping areas, places of work and homes do not have adequate and secure cycle storage.

“People do want to cycle – the number of those cycling to the railway station in recent years has increased dramatically – but not enough is being done to provide safe and direct cycle paths and other infrastructure to meet this demand. We need to build on the success of the Cycling Town project, not sit back on our laurels and say we’ve done all we can.”

The Buzzcycles’ campaign is part of a larger, national campaign called Space For Cycling, being run by national cycling charity CTC and Cyclenation, through which people are encouraged to write to their local councillors challenging them to support cycling.

A Central Beds Council spokesman said: “The council shares BuzzCycles’ ambition to see more people cycling more often and has worked closely with the group over several years to invest in and make Leighton-Linslade more cycle friendly.

“Their current campaign clearly demonstrates the public support for sustained investment in cycling facilities and encourages local councillors as individuals to sign up to the Space for Cycling campaign.”

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