CYCLING campaigners are calling for the county council to take advantage of £1.3m of possible government funding fearing a lost opportunity.

Worcestershire County Council has said it is considering its approach to the application for the funding.

Danny Brothwell, chairman of Bike Worcester, says he wants to see the cash used for vital initiatives such as pop up cycle lanes, as part of the bid to get more people on their bikes after lockdown.

“The guidance is coming down from central government (to avoid public transport) but we don’t want everyone using cars - congestion is already bad in the city,” the campaigner said.

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“This has come down from central government, money to assist local authorities to get people walking and cycling. The deadline is Friday (for the first stage).

"But the council has to apply - I hope something is going on.”

The £1.3m funding from the ‘emergency active travel fund’ was made available to councils after the Department for Transport fast-tracked statutory guidance stating local authorities in areas with high levels of public transport use "should take measures to reallocate road space to people walking and cycling”.

The government's plan is to get people travelling to and from work, and more generally, away from public transport and using their cars instead.

Mr Brothwell added: “There will be a good percentage of people who don’t have access to a car and relied on public transport.

"How are they supposed to get to work?”

Councillor Alan Amos, cabinet member for highways, said: “Worcestershire County Council welcomes this additional investment as it provides a potential funding stream to help deliver our strategic aspirations as highlighted in our Local Transport Plan 4 (LTP4).

"The LTP4 sets the approach to active travel (walking and cycling) schemes, and includes a suite of policies in support of our approach, and priority corridor schemes which we have been focussed on implementing as funding becomes available. We are considering our approach to the announcement together with our district partners as part of our wider response to Covid-19 recovery in Worcestershire.”