[T]housands of school children in Cumbria are to get expert training in how to ride their bikes safely over the next three years.
Cumbria County Council has awarded a contract to Cumbria-based Cyclewise Ltd to deliver ‘Bikeability’ safe cycling training in the county’s primary and secondary schools until 2020.
The three-year contract is available following the council’s success in securing £600,000 for cycle training from the Department for Transport. Cyclewise Ltd is now expected to deliver training to 5,000 Cumbrian youngsters each year.
Each year, over 1,000 Primary School children in Years 3 and 4 will learn basic playground cycle skills, and in Years 5 and 6 they will learn how to ride their bikes safely on roads and cycle lanes, helping them to start cycling to school. More intensive and advanced training will be offered to 150 secondary school students in Years 7 and 8 who already regularly cycle to school.
Councillor Keith Little, Cumbria County Council Cabinet member for transport, said: “I’m really pleased the council is continuing to provide Bikeability training in Cumbria to teach essential cycling and road safety skills and help young people stay safe on their bikes. This important work will also support the Cumbria Cycling Strategy, which aims to get more people cycling more often throughout Cumbria.
Richard Martin of Cyclewise Ltd, said: “After a lengthy tendering process, we are delighted to announce that Cumbria County Council has once again successfully awarded the Bikeability contract and delivery partnership status to Cyclewise. This 3 year contract provides the opportunity for another 14,000 Cumbrian young people to be trained in the national standards of Bikeability. Having so far trained over 36,000 children to Level 1 & 2 standards with our 15 super qualified and experienced Instructors, we look forward to having 50,000 trained safer riders on our Cumbrian roads by 2020.”
Cumbria County Council has organised Bikeability cycle training with Department for Transport funding support for more than 40,000 Cumbrian school pupils since 2007.