Transport Minister Keith Brown visited Strathdevon Primary in Dollar today (2 May) to launch Cycling Scotland’s national ‘Give Me Cycle Space’ campaign.
The Minister was joined by The Riderz stunt team who performed their amazing tricks for the school as part of a national road show which will visit 39 schools across Scotland over the next six weeks.
With pupils gearing up to cycle to school over the summer term, Give Me Cycle Space, funded by Transport Scotland, aims to encourage motorists to be more aware of, give plenty of space to, and slow down for children on bikes. Give Me Cycle Space also points parents and children to information about choosing cycle routes to school.
Transport Minister Keith Brown said: “I am pleased to launch Cycling Scotland’s annual “Give Me Cycle Space” campaign which encourages drivers to look out for children cycling on roads, especially during school run periods.
“The Scottish Government and other key road safety partners continue to enable and encourage safe cycling in Scotland through education and training for cyclists as well as raise awareness for other road users.
“We recently allocated a further £4.5m in grant funding to Cycling Scotland over two years for various projects including this important campaign which is in addition to the £20m announced last September towards cycling infrastructure.
“The Scottish Government aims to help people to make active travel choices for their everyday journeys wherever possible, to improve their health and the environment. Cycling is a great way for people to be more physically active and this campaign is another way we can support people in 2014.”
Ian Aitken, chief executive of Cycling Scotland, said: “With so many children keen to use their bikes to get to school across Scotland, it is essential that we raise awareness amongst all drivers of the need to give adequate space to those travelling by bike- as much space as they’d give a car. It’s also important for parents and children to consider their most appropriate route to and from school, whether by road, shared pathway or traffic-free cycle route. ‘’
“Following last year’s campaign, over two-thirds of parents reported that they felt more confident about their children cycling to school. This is a great step forward in allowing kids in Scotland to enjoy the huge benefits of regular cycling, safe in the knowledge that drivers will be conscious of children on bikes and give them plenty of room to make an easy and safe journey to and from school.”
Iain Withers, leader of The Riderz said: “We’re really excited to be touring around Scotland again this year for the Give Me Cycle Space campaign. We’ve got the UK’s no.1 female BMXer, former British trials champions and even a mega-talented 7yr-old touring all over Scotland from Dumfries to Shetland. It’s a great opportunity to show kids just how much fun cycling is and to help get the message out to drivers to give kids cycle space too. The Give Me Cycle Space campaign carries an important message and I’m delighted The Riderz are able to support it during our tour.”
The Riderz stunt team provide essential ‘Dr Bike’ maintenance sessions and cycle route planning activities as well as performing their spectacular stunts for the pupils.