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DfT stats show strong variations in cycling rates

Wednesday 17th April 2013

During the year ending October 2012, 10% of adults in England cycled at least once per week and 3% at least five times per week, according to recently published DfT statistics.

The DfT statistical bulletin also reveal that 15% of adults in England cycled at least once per month during the period October 2011 to October 2012, unchanged from the same period last year.

There is strong variation in cycling rates across different local authorities. The proportion of adults who cycle at least once per week ranges from 47% (in Cambridge) to less than 5% in a small number of areas. Rates for more frequent cycling show a similar variation across different areas.

2% of adults in England usually travel to work by bicycle, with the highest proportion being in Cambridge (18%).

As in 2010/11, the majority of areas with the highest cycling prevalence are cities or boroughs within cities. Other characteristics associated with a number of these areas are a large student population and a flat local landscape.

Of the 326 local authorities in England, there are six (2%) in which at least a fifth of adults cycle at least once per week. There are 13 authorities (4%) in which less than one in 20 adults cycle at least once per week.

Click here to read the full DfT report: ‘Local area walking and cycling statistics: England 2011/12’

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Quick delve into the report proper and we find that the statistical information was gathered by a telephone survey! How reliable are these stats? Considering the cycling lobby has such a strong influence on legislation I think we need to know far more accurate figures.
Duncan MacKillop, Stratford on Avon

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