‘Better cycling infrastructure should be next on States’ list’
BUILDING UP cycle infrastructure should be next on the States’ list of things to do in making islanders feel more confident riding bikes, according to the chairman of the Guernsey Bicycle Group.
Sam Field said a States scheme launched this week to provide discounts on electric bikes was ‘absolutely brilliant’, but something also needed to be done to help riders feel safer.
‘We are concerned that lots of people will buy these e-cycles, but won’t be confident riding on the roads,’ he said.
‘The States next need to work on creating “cycle corridors” and building up cycle lane infrastructure.
‘Riding a bike on Guernsey is very safe. There is a perception it is dangerous, but it is really safe, especially for commuters, and cycle corridors should be built up to make people feel more safe.’
Mr Field said the e-cycles removed difficulties that usually put people off riding a bike because they make it easier to ride up hills and against the wind, as well as making the cyclist sweat less as a result.
Electric bikes will be sold at a 25% discount when a subsidy scheme is launched on Monday 16 April.
The public/private scheme between Environment & Infrastructure and the island’s four cycle retailers will be available on purchases up to £1,500, with the aim being to encourage people to make ‘more environmentally friendly and healthy transport choices’.
The States will provide a 20% subsidy towards the price of e-cycles and the retailers will make up the remaining 5%.
The scheme has been allocated a subsidy budget of £100,000 by E&I.
Starting on 5 June, the GBG will run a series of evening rides on a Tuesday for around 10 weeks through the back lanes of various parishes.
‘We know not a lot of people are very confident riding on the roads so these are a relaxing way to build confidence,’ he said.
Adult cycling proficiency levels are also being looked into and Mr Field said they would be another way of building confidence.
n More information on the GBG is at www.gbg.org.gg.