How to foster a better cycling culture in the UK

    Cycling is a great way to get from A to B with it offering a way to exercise and move quickly, without breaking the bank. Around 7.6 million people actively cycle in the UK according to data from 2022, which shows how popular it is.

    The scope for increasing the number of cyclists in the UK is huge and it’s something we should be looking at doing with so many environmental benefits. However, a better cycling culture is needed in Great Britain before more people will hop on the pedals.

    Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to do this and our guide offers some of the things that government bodies and cycling charities can be doing to help.

    Why do we need to foster a better cycling culture in the UK?

    With cycling being already popular in the UK, you may be wondering why the culture needs to be better. The first reason is safety. Reports from 2023 highlighted that 83 cyclists were killed last year, showing that this is a problem that needs to be resolved.

    One other reason cycling should be encouraged is because of the environmental benefits it offers. More cyclists commuting to work, the shops or other areas of their lives should reduce congestion on roads, which will be a positive move to make the UK greener.

    What are the different ways we can do it?

    To keep our cyclists free from danger while reaping the rewards of cycling participation in the UK, the following methods should be done:

    Improve safety for cyclists

    Picking up a reliable road bike is the first step to improving safety. Good bikes offer responsive riding to help riders avoid dangerous situations.

    Other protection equipment can reduce danger too but the Highway Code currently states that it’s only advised that road cyclists should wear a helmet. We believe that this should be a legal requirement and other equipment should be encouraged too. This includes elbow pads and lights.

    Increase awareness of cycling laws for drivers

    Vehicles are a major worry for cyclists and many drivers find themselves getting frustrated by road bike users. This is largely due to a lack of understanding of the rules of the road.

    Cyclists are encouraged to ride in the centre of the lane for their safety and have priority over car users. If drivers knew this, it may reduce frustrations, which could lead to fewer risky manoeuvres to overtake them.

    Ensure our cycling infrastructure is adequate

    While the UK is taking great strides to improve the infrastructure of cycling in the UK, there is still a long way to go. Some of the main ways this can be improved is by doing the following:

    • Increase the number of bike storage spaces
    • Create more cycle lanes
    • Make cycling more accessible with grants or discounts

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