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Mayor shares his delight and commitment to Active Travel after positive meeting with Department for Transport

Cambridgeshire's mayor Dr Nik Johnson has welcomed backing from the Department for Transport on his plans to create Active Travel schemes in the region.

The mayor was delighted with the outcome of a meeting with Transport Minister Chris Heaton-Harris, which saw assurances funding will be available if the Combined Authority comes up with effective Active Travel schemes.

As a result the mayor has reaffirmed his commitment to delivering Active Travel schemes in the region and including them within the development of the new Local Transport and Connectivity Plan to be released next year.

Cambridgeshire Mayor Dr Nik Johnson.
Cambridgeshire Mayor Dr Nik Johnson.

In a statement issued by the Combined Authority following the meeting Mayor Dr Johnson said it was important to acknowledge the government was disappointed with the outcomes of previous schemes and understandably withheld funding.

He said: "Active Travel funding comes with conditions.

"The team at the Department for Transport was keen to see a meaningful commitment from the Combined Authority to implement effective active travel schemes.

Chris Heaton-Harris, Transport Minister. Picture: Gov.uk.
Chris Heaton-Harris, Transport Minister. Picture: Gov.uk.

"During the meeting it was clear that both the minister and the Mayor shared the same determination to get people embracing a healthier and more active lifestyle.

"The Combined Authority is committed to enlarging and increasing active travel plans in the area.

"As part of this commitment, we are determined to continue co-operating with all local authorities to ensure value for money, to promote public health improvements, and to deliver meaningful change for the people of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

He added: “As a children’s doctor I know the effects that air pollution has on young people’s general health. In the past couple of weeks, I was shocked to see Cambridge City having warnings regarding exercising outside due to the levels of air pollution. This cannot go on. I want not just for my three children, but for all children in Cambridgeshire to live in an area where they can breathe clean and healthy air.

"Understandably, the government needs guarantees that public money for active travel schemes is being well spent and delivers for the people of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. They have given us reassurances that the money will become forthcoming if these can be met.

"I will continue to work co-operatively with the government and all local interested parties to ensure the successful delivery of future active travel funding, which will benefit all communities here in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.”

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