St Albans commuters encouraged to get on their bikes

St Albans commuters encouraged to get on their bikes

St Albans commuters encouraged to get on their bikes

First published in News by

Newly released data from the 2011 census shows St Albans is still lagging behind in the proportion of cycling commuters.

According to the new figures, just 1.7 per cent of working people in the district use a bicycle to get to work.

The figure is up from 1.4 per cent in 2001, it's still way behind the figure for most other comparable local authorities.

Leading the field is Cambridge, with 29 per cent. Other historic districts including Oxford, York, Norwich and Bristol all do much better than St Albans district, ranging from 7.5 per cent to 17 per cent.

Local Green campaigner Jill Mills said: "St Albans could be a real cycling city. But a lack of foresight and investment by councils and central government means that is not happening. As a result, our health is suffering and our roads are clogged. In a small, compact city like ours, we should be seeing cyclists everywhere.

"Cycling is good for our health, good for the environment and should be promoted. It’s time for us to make real progress in making the district cycle-friendly."

Comments (5)

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10:37am Fri 28 Mar 14

fight rates says...

It is because it is dangerous to cycle into the city on the narrow a roads. A cyclist was recently killed on one of these routes. As property is very expensive in St Albans many of us local workers have to commute into St Albans.. If they installed dedicated cycle paths/tracks like they have in Sweden or Holland. This will encourage more cyclists to ditch their cars.
It is because it is dangerous to cycle into the city on the narrow a roads. A cyclist was recently killed on one of these routes. As property is very expensive in St Albans many of us local workers have to commute into St Albans.. If they installed dedicated cycle paths/tracks like they have in Sweden or Holland. This will encourage more cyclists to ditch their cars. fight rates
  • Score: 6

11:04am Fri 28 Mar 14

cummingam says...

In addition to "fight rates" comments, I would also say that bike security at the station needs to be increased. I just know of too many people who have had bicycles, or significant parts of them, stolen that it totally puts me off cycling to the station and leaving my bike there.
In addition to "fight rates" comments, I would also say that bike security at the station needs to be increased. I just know of too many people who have had bicycles, or significant parts of them, stolen that it totally puts me off cycling to the station and leaving my bike there. cummingam
  • Score: 4

11:57am Fri 28 Mar 14

mikex says...

Fightrates is completely correct- although the risk of cycling is pretty low and far offset by the benefits to health, many people are discouraged from cycling by their perception of danger. Recent surveys from Sustrans incidate that more than half of people who don't cycle would consider cycling if more cycling facilities like dedicated routes, cycle lanes and 20mph speed limits were brought in.

Cycling isn't a political issue, it addresses issues about congestion, pollution, activity, health and transport poverty which are common to all of us regardless of politics - it's encouraging to see that many of our local councillors cycle.

Investment in cycling facilities in other cities has increased the number of people cycling considerably and it's something which could happen in St Albans if there is continuing investment in cycling facilities and in promoting cycling as a cheap, healthy and convenient way of travelling.

We need a city where poeple feel that cycling is safe and normal so that cycling becomes more of a natural choice for local journeys. The Green Ring is a start, but we need routes into the city centre too- whether these are off road or on- and stategic routes to link St Albans to other local towns like Redbourne and Wheathampstead to make people feel that travelling by bike into the city is safer.

The number of people cycling to work in St Albans has increased by 28% (around 600 people since 2001) but it's still only 1.7%- an increase of 0.1 percentage points since 2001. However the cycling story isn't quite as bad as the census figures indicate.

The census figures don't include people who cycle to the station as part of their daily rail commute- St Albans station currently has the largest number of cycle parking spaces in the country and they fill up rapidly, especially when the weather improves. The station also has a mobile cycle mechanic on Mondays and Wednesdays to deal with bike repairs. Security can be improved but FCC and the Transport Police are working hard on this- in the meantime using an old bike as your train bike is a good idea and locking securely using a good bike lock is essential- have a look at the bike security signs close to the bike racks for hints.

Many more people use bikes locally and numbers are stadily increasing. The challenge is to help grow these figures.

The latest Department for Transport surveys published in 2012 show that in St Albans:

22% cycle once a month or more in 2012 , up 2% from 20% in 2011
13% cycle once a week or more in 2012, up 1% from 12% in 2011
6% cycle three times a week or more in 2012, up 1% from 5% in 2011
4% cycle 5 times a week or more, static against 2011 figures.

Source https://www.gov.uk/g
overnment/statistica
l-data-sets/cw011-pr
oportion-of-resident
s-who-or-cycle-any-l
ength-or-purpose

Cycling will be boosted this year by the 'Wiggins effect' - driven by the Tour de France in Yorkshire and Cambridgeshire, the Tour Of Britain and the Womens Tour wchich has a stage finish in Welwyn on 10th May. Local cyclists are hoping that St Alabsn will join in with other Hertfordsire town srunning cycling evernts for the Hertsfordshire SUmmer of Cycling being run by Herts County Council.
Fightrates is completely correct- although the risk of cycling is pretty low and far offset by the benefits to health, many people are discouraged from cycling by their perception of danger. Recent surveys from Sustrans incidate that more than half of people who don't cycle would consider cycling if more cycling facilities like dedicated routes, cycle lanes and 20mph speed limits were brought in. Cycling isn't a political issue, it addresses issues about congestion, pollution, activity, health and transport poverty which are common to all of us regardless of politics - it's encouraging to see that many of our local councillors cycle. Investment in cycling facilities in other cities has increased the number of people cycling considerably and it's something which could happen in St Albans if there is continuing investment in cycling facilities and in promoting cycling as a cheap, healthy and convenient way of travelling. We need a city where poeple feel that cycling is safe and normal so that cycling becomes more of a natural choice for local journeys. The Green Ring is a start, but we need routes into the city centre too- whether these are off road or on- and stategic routes to link St Albans to other local towns like Redbourne and Wheathampstead to make people feel that travelling by bike into the city is safer. The number of people cycling to work in St Albans has increased by 28% (around 600 people since 2001) but it's still only 1.7%- an increase of 0.1 percentage points since 2001. However the cycling story isn't quite as bad as the census figures indicate. The census figures don't include people who cycle to the station as part of their daily rail commute- St Albans station currently has the largest number of cycle parking spaces in the country and they fill up rapidly, especially when the weather improves. The station also has a mobile cycle mechanic on Mondays and Wednesdays to deal with bike repairs. Security can be improved but FCC and the Transport Police are working hard on this- in the meantime using an old bike as your train bike is a good idea and locking securely using a good bike lock is essential- have a look at the bike security signs close to the bike racks for hints. Many more people use bikes locally and numbers are stadily increasing. The challenge is to help grow these figures. The latest Department for Transport surveys published in 2012 show that in St Albans: 22% cycle once a month or more in 2012 , up 2% from 20% in 2011 13% cycle once a week or more in 2012, up 1% from 12% in 2011 6% cycle three times a week or more in 2012, up 1% from 5% in 2011 4% cycle 5 times a week or more, static against 2011 figures. Source https://www.gov.uk/g overnment/statistica l-data-sets/cw011-pr oportion-of-resident s-who-or-cycle-any-l ength-or-purpose Cycling will be boosted this year by the 'Wiggins effect' - driven by the Tour de France in Yorkshire and Cambridgeshire, the Tour Of Britain and the Womens Tour wchich has a stage finish in Welwyn on 10th May. Local cyclists are hoping that St Alabsn will join in with other Hertfordsire town srunning cycling evernts for the Hertsfordshire SUmmer of Cycling being run by Herts County Council. mikex
  • Score: 2

7:33am Sun 30 Mar 14

gertcha says...

There are too many hills in St Albans, we need to flatten the place out
There are too many hills in St Albans, we need to flatten the place out gertcha
  • Score: 0

6:45pm Sun 30 Mar 14

jacksona1960 says...

Maybe if the roads didn't have so many potholes and great big craters in them I for one would enjoy cycling more. I cycle from Watford to St Albans 5 times a week and the road from the Noke Hotel to Belmont hill and in 3weeks I have had 7 flats that are caused by the poor state of repair to road .
The only safe way down st Stephens hill on a road bike like mine is to ride in the middle of the road and zig zag round the holes
Maybe if the roads didn't have so many potholes and great big craters in them I for one would enjoy cycling more. I cycle from Watford to St Albans 5 times a week and the road from the Noke Hotel to Belmont hill and in 3weeks I have had 7 flats that are caused by the poor state of repair to road . The only safe way down st Stephens hill on a road bike like mine is to ride in the middle of the road and zig zag round the holes jacksona1960
  • Score: 6

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