Oxford is acknowledged as one of few true 'Cycling Cities' in the United Kingdom. The 2011 Census found that nearly 20% of people in Oxford cycled to work, (an increase of 4.1% since the 2001 Census) the second highest rate of any local authority area in England and Wales (download the GOV.UK cycling statistics document for more).
Nationally, just one in 50 pupils travels to school by bike, but almost 60% of pupils cycle to the Cherwell School in Oxford – and only 1 in 10 by car (visit the Cycling UK website for more).
In Oxford, Oxfordshire County Council is responsible for upgrading and maintaining the majority of cycle tracks, on-road cycle facilities and the identification and creation of new cycle routes.
Whilst we have ambitions to become an even more cycle friendly city, we are limited in some areas by the geography of Oxford including narrow streets and historic buildings leading to a poor cycling experiences where cyclists have to use roads with heavy-traffic.
We therefore initiated the Oxford Cycle City initiative in 2012 with the aim of realising our vision for Oxford to be one of the truly great cycling cities of Europe and capital funds were allocated over a 3 year period.
The Cycle City project is about making small but important changes to cycling infrastructure to improve the cycling experience, and to encourage more people to use their bikes as their main mode of transport. The project resulted in added signage in Headington directing cyclist towards cycle friendly routes; cycle training for inexperienced cyclist; and the removal of barriers on the cycling network.