Getting Moving A Manifesto for Cycling in Greater Manchester

20% of Greater Manchester journeys under 5 miles by bike by 2020.

Cycling. More people. More journeys. More of the time. Economy. Build bikes. Make jobs. Revive communities. Climate. No emissions. No fuss. No delays. Health. Work out, don’t pay out. Breathe clean air. Social. For everyone, all the time.

Cycling for All
Cycling is not only a fantastic leisure pursuit: it’s the perfect way cycling, more of the time, and enjoying the benefits of it. to get from A to B. This manifesto is about how to get more people For many, cycling offers an affordable way to get to work, school, college and the shops. It keeps them active, saves money and helps them to reduce their climate change emissions. With businesses can thrive. healthy active staff and efficiently running transport networks, Currently the modal share for cycling to work in Greater way in cycling (see below).

An active lifestyle contributes to good physical and mental health. An increase in sedentary lifestyles has been linked to the rise argues that “if one third of car journeys under five miles were transferred to foot or cycle it would save as many lives as all in the use of motor vehicles. The GM Director of Public Health

other heart disease prevention measures put together.”3 The cost to the UK of treating obesity has been estimated at £4.2bn per year and is predicted to double by 2050.

Cycling brings wide economic benefits, including reduced health reduced absenteeism: regular cyclists take on average one less sick day per year4. Road bills, more disposable income and

Manchester is around 1%, much lower than the cities leading the

It has been estimated that transport accounts for over 30% of carbon emissions in Greater Manchester1. With the UK

The modal share for cycling to work in Greater Manchester should rise from 1% to 20%.
by 20256.

congestion is rising and Greater

Manchester has some of the worst levels5. It has been estimated that

government striving to cut total

CO2 emissions by over 80% on 1990 levels by 2050, low-carbon modes of transport are essential. The impact of local transport is particularly significant. In 2006, 57% of all trips in the UK (excluding cycling and walking), and to be less energy efficient than longer ones, as cars do fewer such trips are perfect for cycling. 56% of car journeys, were less than five miles. These trips tend miles per gallon in urban conditions than on motorways2 - and

traffic congestion will cost the UK economy £22 billion each year

Learning the Lessons
Many other cities have achieved much greater levels of cycling. If it is to join them, Greater Manchester must identify and address the barriers to cycling. The five policies presented in this manifesto are essential in getting to the point where 20% of all journeys under five miles are made by bike.

How do cities compare? Greater Manchester 1% Edinburgh, UK 4% Cambridge, UK 25% Copenhagen, DK 36% Münster, DE 38%

* Because each city records its statistics in a different way, these cycling modal shift figures are included to provide an approximate comparison and show what can be achieved.

Where We Are
Cycling infrastructure includes on-road cycle lanes, advanced stop lines at junctions, off-road cycle routes and shared-use (pedestrian/cycle) facilities as well as cycle parking and route lanes and routes. There is some recognition of this in the Local Transport Plan: “Our overall aim is to enable people to cycle safely on the whole on and off-road network. However, as a priority the completing a core cycle network (of local, regional and comfortable and coherent cycle routes.”7 local highway authorities will each continue to work towards national routes) providing direct, continuous, safe, attractive, It does not, however, indicate whether, in terms of the type of cycle infrastructure installed, this core cycle network will be thinking. “business as usual”, or will entail new designs and evidence new To encourage more people to cycle, the Greater Manchester signposted and give priority to cyclists.

signage. The discussion in this section will relate mostly to cycle Much of the cycling and walking infrastructure in Greater

Manchester is poor compared to “best practice” in other UK

cities. Many of the short sections of on-road “cycle lane” have not met national guidance in terms of width or layout, and do not provide continuous or coherent routes to key destinations. behind other UK cities, such as York and Cambridge. been constrained by a lack of

Current GM parking standards and planning guidelines also lag The development of effective cycling infrastructure has also long term strategic planning and a poor level of integration with other strategies and sectors: for example, planning guidance on walking and enforcement regarding vehicles promotion strategies. cycling not being implemented, poor

cycle network will need to include traffic-free facilities, be well Developing such a GM-wide cycle network will require strategic thinking and longer-term planning.

There is a clear need for a coherent and consistent cycle network.

Short-term measures must

help to move in this direction access and permeability by creating more contra-flow routes networks and making them more cycle-friendly. and could include increasing

parking in cycle lanes, and poor integration within health Whilst most would agree that installing poor cycling

and by both extending the Quality Bus Corridors and bus lane It is also vital that a generous amount of secure, covered

infrastructure is an ineffective use of funding, there is a lack of coherence within the ‘cycling community’ on the type of cycle at all. Crudely put, there has been a divide between those lanes and routes required or whether they should be installed who argue that the road is the cycle network and cycle lane infrastructure is unnecessary and/or dangerous and those who advocate the development of a ‘European-style’ cycling direct routes that can be cycled at speed and are designed around the needs of cyclists’ – such as have often been and Denmark.

cycle parking is installed and that planning guidance sets high standards for parking in residential and business buildings.

infrastructure, separated from motorised traffic, which provides

developed in northern European countries like the Netherlands

Getting Moving
Alongside the other improvements advocated in this document, there is a clear need for the development of a coherent and consistent cycle network in Greater Manchester.


Where We Are
The bicycle is an excellent method of transport for most people for distances up to five miles. Combined with other sustainable transport modes, it becomes an even more flexible tool.

Getting Moving
Examples of initiatives to improve integration of cycling with public transport demonstrate that it can be instrumental in journeys. increasing levels of cycling, with a corresponding reduction in car When Denver, USA, provided cycle carriage on all buses, saying they would have taken a car if this facility were not

In Greater Manchester, the transport system is not as integrated as it could be. Currently bicycles are not allowed on GM bus services or Metrolink trams and there is limited peak time quality cycle parking at interchanges is not widespread. carriage on rail services. In addition, the provision of good Other cities have developed more progressive policies to

passenger numbers rose by 0.7%, with many of those surveyed available10. In the case of Greater Manchester’s Metrolink,

we estimate that this would equate to an additional 315,000 passenger journeys, 208,000 fewer car journeys and would generate an extra £346,000 in revenue each year for Metrolink. In addition to having the ability to convey cycles by train and stay everywhere and long stay tram, it is important to provide good quality cycle parking (short

integrate cycling with public transport. The box below highlights the contrast between the Copenhagen policy and the new Greater Manchester Local Transport Plan (LTP3).

Combined with other transport modes, the bicycle becomes an even more flexible tool.

capacity at major interchanges) at bus and rail stations. Improved signage and access to stations would also encourage more people to cycle to facility.

their nearest major public transport For example, South West Trains, train operator in south-west City of Copenhagen Cycle Policy 2002-2012
“The Copenhagen Transport Public Transport Plan (1998) takes a highly favourable view of combining cycling and public transport and targets cyclists as potential customers to a greater extent than in the past. This has resulted in the removal of most restrictions applying to bicycles on commuter trains. There are still some restrictions applying to rush hours. However, the most recent development is that bicycles are now allowed on commuter trains in rush hours when travelling in the opposite direction to the main traffic. As more and more commuter trains of the new type are acquired bicycles will eventually be allowed on the train at all hours of the day. Bicycles will be permitted on the new Metro around the clock.”

London, Surrey, Hampshire and Dorset, has made significant investment in cycle parking at some of its London suburban stations. The first of its kind in the UK, the double-deck cycle Station providing covered, secure parking for 175 bicycles.

parking facility was installed during 2004 at Surbiton Railway The station forecourt was also remodelled to reduce vehicle

volumes and speeds. A survey of users of the upgraded facility

showed that 25% occasionally drove to the station and 37% were occasional car passengers. 10% of the cyclists using the facility were regular car users prior to its introduction11. Across Surrey,

improved cycle parking at stations is reported to have increased by 30%12.

the number of journeys to railway stations undertaken by bicycle

GM Local Transport Plan 2011 – 2025
“Cycle carriage is permitted on Northern trains (the major operator in Greater Manchester) but overcrowding means that there are serious problems in accommodating more than two bikes on some trains, and conductors have the right to refuse access if the train is crowded. There is, however, no restriction on the number of folding bikes carried.” The carriage of bicycles on Metrolink is prohibited under the by-laws due to constraints on space on the existing trams, unless they are folded and fully encased. This policy was recently re-affirmed following a review. Bus operators in Greater Manchester do not permit cycle carriage.”9


Where We Are
Provision of cycle training is a vital component of any plan to increase cycling levels. Heavy traffic volumes and decades of on Greater Manchester’s roads are real barriers to cycling car-centric planning mean that the speed and volume of traffic and, whilst it is important to address these, it is also vital that on the road.

Getting Moving
Programmes for adult cycle training are being piloted in Manchester, with excellent take up, and we strongly support the provision of these subsidised training sessions being made available on an ongoing basis across all Greater Manchester boroughs. This would ensure that new cyclists, and those confidently and safely on our roads. returning to cycling, could gain the skills they need to cycle Starting in July 2010, Manchester City Council provided funding for 700 adult cycle training places. The Freewheeling cycle training has been delivered by BikeRight!, a Manchester-based company. By September 2011, the project had delivered all 700 cycle training places. Since then Freewheeling has been A survey of GM adult cycle trainees in December 2010 found that people changed how they travelled.

individuals are given the skills and confidence they need to cycle The ‘Bikeability’ programme for children addresses the training

needs for those who are of school age and we fully support the need for free training for adults.

continuation and extension of such programmes. There is also a

supported via Local Sustainable Transport Funding (LSTF) and has been available for people across Greater Manchester. So far, over 1000 cycle training places have been delivered. Nearly 24% of training places have been ‘Learn to Ride’ sessions – literally, teaching people how to ride a bike. Nearly 11% of the participating adults had never learnt how to 18-30 years (27%), 31-40 years (29%), 41-50 years (24%), 51-60 years (17%). Over 72% were women.

cycling to work

taking car to work


cycle. The participants represented a wide range of age groups:

The adult cycle training was initially for anyone who lives, or

works, in Manchester. Since September 2011 it was available for anyone in Greater Manchester. The greatest proportion of by Trafford (12%) and Stockport (8%), but there have been participants have been Manchester residents (54%), followed participants from all 10 Greater Manchester areas – indicating

a demand for such adult cycle training in all GM local authority ...of participants agree or strongly agree that the training helped them feel safer and increased competence and confidence.



It is vital that people are given the skills and confidence to cycle on the roads.

...agree or strongly agree that the cycle training encouraged them to cycle more often.


Where We Are
Traffic speed is a barrier to cycling. In 2007 a survey carried out by the Department of Transport found that 47% of those surveyed strongly agreed with the statement: “The idea of cycling on busy roads frightens me.”

Getting Moving
The 20’s Plenty16 campaign is now supported by voluntary and road safety organisations. 20 mph is the norm in much of for example Portsmouth and Liverpool, have committed to 20 mph default speed limits for residential areas. Northern Europe and many local authorities throughout the UK,

In 1934 with about 1.5 million cars on the road, no speed limits and a high fatality rate, a 30 mph speed limit was adopted as the default for built up areas. Since this time, the UK has seen a 20-fold increase in motor vehicle use and the 30 mph limit can now be considered outdated. Observatory has highlighted compelling evidence that limits in residential areas introducing 20 mph speed would save lives and reduce The North West Public Health

This can be done without speed bumps and only needs a small 100 metres. Communities are recognising that, with so many faster does not necessarily mean

reminder sign on lampposts or painted on the road surface every other holdups on the journey on today’s congested roads, going arriving earlier. Lower speeds allow everyone more time to respond to to avoid crashes. incidents on the road and take action Lower speeds are not only safer for pedestrians and cyclists, but also

There is compelling evidence that 20 mph speed limits would save lives and reduce injuries.

injuries. Their research found

that introducing 20 mph speed limits could reduce the number of pedestrians of all ages killed or seriously injured by 26% and the In a recent British social attitudes survey 74% thought that 20 70% of drivers questioned15. number of cyclists of all ages killed or seriously injured by 14%13. mph was the appropriate speed for residential areas, including

more pleasant for residents, shoppers and other visitors and result in fewer minor, but costly, bumps and scrapes. Whilst, gives everyone the freedom to walk and cycle on our roads. at worst, it adds a few seconds to general car journey times, it

The Effect of Speed on Pedestrian Fatalities: % occuring at impact speeds below the level shown





30 40 50 60 (18.6mph) (31.1mph) Impact Speed (kmh)

OECD ECMT Transport Research Centre research found that and that 85% occur at impact speeds between 30kmh and 60kmh.

5% of pedestrian fatalities occur at impact speeds below 30kmh,


Where We Are
The UK is not alone in being saturated with marketing that promotes the car. To many, the car has become an intrinsic part of the way they work, shop and spend leisure time, to the extent that they cannot see how they could manage without it17. Research by the Department for Transport in 2004 found referred to the need to counter the effects of commercial advertising18.

Getting Moving
Effective advertising campaigns can inform people about the impacts of their travel choices and the benefits of changing practices. The Love Your Bike campaign, for example, was launched in 2006 with a billboard campaign in Greater on time.”

that those involved in travel awareness campaigns frequently

Manchester with the slogan “save cash, burn calories, get there Campaigns are an important part of the package of measures available to those aiming to increase cycling levels. The 2004 campaigns can not only complement other policy initiatives but also that they are at their most effective when linked to Department for Transport research found that travel awareness

There are many pervasive myths: that cycling is for the super fit, that it is unsafe, and that specialised, expensive equipment is daily commuting and travel choices , cycling needs

required. In a society in which people quickly form habits in their

prominent and well-argued backing that cuts through the media hype

surrounding the car and challenges the common

There are many pervasive myths. Cycling needs prominent backing.

infrastructure improvements. It also

raised the issue of ‘perception mismatch’ between changes and their benefits, finding that campaigns can help to make potentially unpopular measures more palatable.

perception that the bike is for leisure and sport rather than being a healthy and affordable mode of transport that is suitable for many people.

billboard, TV and radio campaigns, and there are many other ways to get the message across. A German campaign put adverts on supermarket trolleys with the message “The only

Campaign approaches include traditional

vehicle you’ll need for this shopping” placed a banner above “Reserved for German Ministry Climate Heroes” Environment Germany20 created a cinema advert informing the viewer that their date

station cycle parking saying “Reserved for Climate Heroes”, and will be fitter and more intelligent if she/he had cycled there. An five people surveyed had as a result reduced their car use for

assessment of this campaign package found that almost one in shorter journeys. Other examples of awareness campaigns are Mobility Week.

events such as the regular Bike Week, Sky Rides and European It is important that campaigns reflect consideration of their target

Catch up with the Bicycle London21
photo: Ewan-M

audience. People who already occasionally cycle may be more Cycling England in London found that this group represented

open to the idea of cycle commuting, for example. Research by 70% of London’s cyclists but only accounted for 25% of trips23. and potentially receptive to campaigns that emphasise the financial and health benefits of commuting to work.

Transport for

These people are likely to be predisposed to the idea of cycling

Burn calories,

Individualised travel marketing, in which information relevant to specific journey requirements is provided, is a valuable approach. Sustrans’ TravelSmart programme demonstrated that this approach can bring about increases in trips by sustainable transport modes by as much as 20%24.

save cash, get there on time. Manchester Love Your Bike22,


Time to Step Up A Gear
Cycling needs to be given the green light. Many people already cycle, and we know that many more people want to. But they don’t. They have their reasons, be it the speed of traffic, the lack of dedicated cycle lanes, inadequate bike will be stolen. bike storage and changing facilities at work, or concern that their Sometimes it’s the weather, which is likely to be outside the control of the readers of this manifesto. But this document presents things that we can, as a city region, as local authorities, as businesses, as schools, colleges and universities, get on with now. Together we can make a real their journeys.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Greater Manchester Local Transport Plan Draft Long-term Strategy, October 2010. Page 8. Towards a Sustainable Transport System, Department for Transport, 2007 GM Health Commission Programme, July 2010 The British Cycling Economy. ‘Gross Cycling Product’ Report, London School of Economics 2011 Europe’s Most Congested Cities,, April 2008. The Eddington Transport Study, Department of Transport, 2006 Greater Manchester Local Transport Plan Core Strategy, GMITA, 2011 Plan_Core_Strategy.pdf City of Copenhagen Cycle Policy 2002-2012 - Combining cycling and public transport (page 28) GM Local Transport Plan (LTP3) Integration with public transport, GMITA, February 2011

6. 7.

difference and get more people cycling, more often, for more of The benefits will be immense. Whether it’s the reduction in climate change emissions, the decrease in peak time congestion, or the health benefits that are passed on to and prosperous future.



employers, investing in cycling is the way to a green, healthy We need strong leadership, investment and co-ordinated action. The challenge is clear. What are you going to do to make it happen?

10. 11. All Party Parliamentary Group on Cycling 12. CTC Press Archive - 31st January 2006 13. Cycling: Personal Travel Factsheeet, Department for Transport, 2007 14. Road traffic collisions and casualties in the North West of England”, page 89, 24th January 2011 15. 2010 British Social Attitudes Survey 16. 20s Plenty 17. Car Sick: Solutions for our Car-addicted Culture Lynn Sloman, Green Books 2006 18. Smarter Choices - Changing the Way We Travel, Department for Transport, 1994 19. see id=29899545 for a summary of research on this issue 20. German Ministry for Environment, Nature Protection and Reaction Security 21. 22. Love Your Bike Campaign, Manchester Friends of the Earth 23. Smart Measures Cycling Portfolio - Understanding the Cycling Market, Cycling England, 2008 24. TravelSmart in Gloucester: Barton, Tredworth and White City: Final Report for the Individualised Travel Marketing Programme, Sustrans, 2006 Glos%20TravelSmart%20Final%20Report%20Oct%2006.pdf


Getting Moving, a Manifesto for Cycling in Greater Manchester, has been produced by the Love Your Bike Campaign and is supported by the following organisations. See for a full list of supporters. March 2012





University of Manchester Bicycle Users’ Group

Cycling from A to B: at the core of climate, environment and health. Cycling infrastructure should be high quality, consistent and appropriate. Cycling should be fully integrated into the public transport system. On-road cycling training courses should be provided free of charge for adults. Residential areas should have a default speed limit of 20mph. Campaigns to promote cycling from A to B should be bold, sustained and targeted.