LETTER : Why cyclists deserve mileage

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The Independent Online
From Mr Steve Melia

Sir: I was surprised and disappointed to read Jonathan Glancey ("Dear Citizen Dave", 10 August) describe Walsall Council's bicycle mileage rate of 10p a mile, as an "extreme" policy, typical of the "loony left".

Organisations which are serious about encouraging non-polluting transport (public and private sector) often pay mileage allowances to employees travelling by bike on business. Running a bicycle is not as cheap as non- cyclists might imagine - a recent study evaluated the cost of running a modern, lightweight mountain bike with high-quality equipment to be over 20p a mile.

If a modest allowance of 10p a mile encourages some employees to go by bike rather than car, then it will have saved the ratepayers some money and taken one more polluting vehicle out of our towns. To pay an allowance encouraging employees to travel by car (particularly a bigger allowance for bigger cars) and nothing for travel by bike - that would be a really loony policy.

Yours sincerely,

Steve Melia

South Hams Cycle User Group

South Brent, Devon

11 August