Cycling UK Oxfordshire is part of the Oxfordshire Cycling Network (OCN), a network of local cycling organisations and individuals who combine their efforts to improve facilities and increase cycling in the county. We and OCN support the national Space for Cycling campaign, and together support the 170,000 in the county who cycle today and the 400,000+ who would cycle if they felt it was safe, convenient and attractive.
While we are mostly very experienced cyclists, the OCN campaigns for cycling facilities suitable for all ages and all abilities. In Oxfordshire, we estimate that 3% of journeys are made by cycle. This is above the UK average of 2%, but in Germany it is 14% and in the Netherlands the equivalent it is 26% so there is enormous scope for growth. With this growth will come benefits for people’s health, for the environment, and for the local economy.
Since 2015 OCN has made progress getting involved in the decision-making processes that shape provision for transport in the county. We are represented on the Transport Group of the Oxfordshire Local Economic Partnership (OxLEP) and the County Council’s Active and Healthy Travel Steering Group. We have helped to shape the county’s strategy (LTP4 Active and Healthy Travel Strategy) and are beginning to influence specific schemes such as Access to Headington.
In March 2017, we launched our vision for a Strategic Cycle Network for Oxfordshire. This received great coverage in the media and support from public and politicians of all parties.
In April 2017, with our input, the council approved a new and much improved Design Guide for Cycling in Oxfordshire (Annexe 3).
We ran a campaign ahead of the County Council Election on 4th May 2017 to increase the number of County Councillors who support Space for Cycling. This was a great success, more than doubling the number of supporting Councillors from 10 to 22. We plan to keep working with these Councillors, with the new Cabinet Member for Environment (including Transport) Yvonne Constance and with the Council’s staff to improve conditions for cycling in the county.
However, there is much to do. Schemes are still being developed, both by authorities in the county and by private developers that fall short of the needs of people who want to cycle to work, to school or for other reasons. If you would like to help, please email OCN.