The Chancellor announced in his Autumn Statement yesterday that £24 million will go towards both hosting the cycling road World Championships in 2019 and improving cycle infrastructure in Yorkshire on a whole. Sheffield City Council are not yet aware of how the money will be spent.
Yorkshire was confirmed as the 2019 host for the UCI Road World Championships last month. This is the latest of many large-scale cycling events in Yorkshire. But how will this investment Yorkshire benefit Sheffield?
Russell Cutts, the owner of Russell’s Bikes, thinks there is much more the council could do in order to improve the city to promote cycling. “You can see commuters increasing everywhere you look, but the city isn’t well planned and therefore doesn’t really benefit anybody.
“The city has many difficult junctions, particularly the university roundabout, where cycles have to risk their lives to cross them”.
— Michael Fenn (@MichaelFenn) November 24, 2016
Joe Connolly, who works at Russell’s Bikes, believes Sheffield “is not really a cycle city” and could benefit by looking to the likes of York and Lincoln which have a much better infrastructure for cyclists.
The 29 year old from Woodseats has certainly seen a rise in people using bikes and thinks Sheffield would benefit massively from an improvement of cycle lanes and sorting out the huge pothole problem that plagues the city.
“South West of the city has more cycle lanes with better quality roads, but it is north of city where many improvements could be made.”
Luke McCrave, 24, from Stannington, thinks the infrastructure in Sheffield is a joke. He said: “The first major problem is pot holes, which are so bad in Sheffield as to be prohibitive to cycling. Secondly there is a laughable amount of cycle lanes and those that exist are in poor shape.”
Tomorrow there will be a mass cycle stating outside the Sheffield time hall. It will be the last Sheffield City Region Critical Mass ride of 2016 and has been nicknamed ‘Yule Never Ride Alone’. As it’s nearly the festive season, people are encouraged to decorate their bikes with tinsel and Christmas lights for the eight mile ride which aims to promote people to get out more and exercise.