LETTERS : Pedalling a way out of the jam

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The Independent Online
From Mr Colin Graham Sir: I read with interest your leading article ("Mawhinney gets us out of a jam", 20 December) and your assertion that "there is no obvious alternative modern transport system that will prove quick, clean and reasonably cheap".

A major part of the solution is the bicycle. Research for the Cyclists' Touring Club shows that cycling in the UK could increase ten-fold (to Danish levels). This same research was presented to the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution whose recommendation was to call on the Government to target a four-fold increase in cycling by 2005 (German levels of cycle use).

The CTC findings are based on the fact that 72 per cent of all journeys and most car journeys are below five miles in length. The benefits of investing in cycling are that it is cheap and would provide up to £4bn in social benefits related to health, congestion and pollution.

The problem is a small one (local transport) and the solution quick, cheap, clean and efficient (cycling).

Yours sincerely, COLIN GRAHAM Cyclists' Touring Club Godalming, Surrey 20 December

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