Mr Simon Hughes (Southwark and Bermondsey)
The figures are interesting. The Cyclists Touring Club tells us that cycling in Great Britain in terms of distances cycled ??? nobody will do the multiplication, but it is presented in this way and thus comparisons can be made???has fallen from 1952, when it was at its peak, the figure being 23 times 109 kms, when cycling accounted for approximately 25 per cent. of all distances travelled, to a low of 3??4 times 109 kms in 1974. Since 1974, the national figure has risen considerably, particularly for local journeys, and notably so in London. It is encouraging that in this city, part of which I represent, where one would imagine cycling to be the least acceptable form of transport because of the hazards and the heavy traffic, there has been a cycle use increase of about 20 per cent. per year in the past four or five years. Cycling now makes up approximately 4 per cent. of all trips. The interesting additional statistic that is thrown in is that cycles comprise 25 per cent. of all vehicle flows at some major junctions. I did not realise that they were that thick on the ground, but that is the trend.