Forgive me for using a title that is actually a tweet, but this post is a tweet that turned out to be too long to be a tweet, so it is a mini-blog instead of a micro-blog, but not a sub-tweet.
Having recently rejoined the London Cycling Campaign, I now get their e-newsletter thing. This week’s is a bit depressing, with the news that only 66 000 people have signed the Get Britain Cycling petition, which was started in April of this year, with support from the Times as part of its Cycle Safe campaign. The petition is also supported by all the major cycling organisations in the U.K..
I know I have signed, I’m pretty sure Anna has signed, and I had hoped that everyone I know that cycles in the U.K. has signed it, and everyone else that cycles in the U.K. regularly surely ought to have signed it too. In which case, why so few signatures? Is that really the level of support that cycling has amongst in its own constituency? What chance do we have of making major changes to Britain’s transport policy if we can’t even get 100 000 signatures on this petition?
The text of petition follows:
We the undersigned call on the Prime Minister to pledge that the Government will implement the recommendations in the ‘Get Britain Cycling’ parliamentary report. The inquiry, chaired by a cross-party panel of MPs and peers, heard that promoting cycling as a healthy and affordable way to travel can tackle Britain’s obesity crisis, save millions from NHS budgets, boost the economy and reduce congestion on our roads and trains. The inquiry’s 18 recommendations focus on reallocating investment, safer road design, lower speed limits, better training and strong political leadership.
This will require cross-departmental consensus led from the Cabinet Office and Downing Street, not just from the Department for Transport. In the Commons on February 22, 2012, the Prime Minister said of The Times’s ‘Cities Fit for Cycling’ campaign: “If we want to encourage the growth in cycling we’ve seen in recent years, we need to get behind campaigns like this.”
Now is the time to act on those words.