Olympian Chris Boardman explains how #ChooseCycling could change the face of UK transport
Former British cyclist Chris Boardman spoke to Tesco as part of GB Cycling's #ChooseCycling campaign which we have signed up to.
“Cycling is a skill that most people learn as a child and then forget about when they get older. It’s got to be social and safe for it to be sustainable, and it’s got to be fun. Normal people in normal clothes won’t get on their bikes unless it’s easy, convenient and enjoyable.”
Formed by British Cycling in 2015, the #ChooseCycling network is a group of major British businesses with a collective workforce of more than half a million people. The group believes promoting cycling and walking as everyday transport options will help their businesses thrive – encouraging healthier living and making Britain a more pleasant place.
“People say that some of the cycle lanes we have now aren’t very good, but they’re the first step and you need to do that to get to the next one. They give cycling a visibility on the roads. It would be a lot more efficient if we just got it right to start with, but it’s not an option – culture change is always slow and you need to do the first bit to get to the next one and so on.”
#ChooseCycling promotes the benefits of cycling to their businesses.
“It’s proved that people who cycle regularly have fewer days off sick and suffer fewer serious conditions caused by lack of activity, so there’s tonnes we can do by getting more people on their bikes.”
The network supports the creation of safe and accessible cycle routes. Evidence shows that people will use these routes to get to work if they’re available – saving money, improving their fitness and cutting down journey times.
“In the future, I want cycling to be a real choice for my children so they are able to ride to school or to their friends’ houses if they wish. Right now, I wouldn’t let me kids do that and our surveys show that other parents feel the same way. If we build a dedicated safe space, we can all make our short journeys by bike, which is good for us all.”