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January 24, 2022 6:41 PM

Bromsgrove Liberal Democrats have submitted a motion to this week's Full Council calling for the authority to invest unspent covid recovery funds on improving cycling facilities for children.

Bromsgrove District Council has significant reserves of unspent covid recovery funds, prompting Lib Dem councillors to issue a call for the authority to invest the funds in creating a legacy of future cycling enthusiasts. The motion would see council officers explore ways of using unspent covid funds to secure new cycling facilities for children across the district's parks.

At the heart of the plan is a proposal to build a new cycling training area that would mimic the road network and allow children to cycle on imitation roads with real signs, road markings and crossings. This would offer local children an exciting opportunity to learn to ride safely before they start cycling on real roads. A similar scheme has recently been installed in Stratford as part of the Riverside Project. The plan would also see investment in cycling trails and pump tracks for older children and adults, as there is currently no provision of these facilities in Bromsgrove. Rob Cyling

The plan is designed to complement existing investment in cycling infrastructure by the County Council so that young people are able to fully take advantage of new safer cycling routes across the district as they emerge.

Lib Dem Leader Councillor Rob Hunter said: "Of course the covid recovery funding should first and foremost be used to support local people and businesses who have faced hardship as a result of the pandemic. However, as we ease out of restrictions and more normal trading patterns return, we need to consider how we should prioritise any leftover funds for the wider recovery of our communities. The Lib Dems want to see these funds used to create a sustainable legacy for our district by inspiring more young people to take up cycling."

Lib Dem Councillor Siobhan Robinson who represents Bromsgrove Central on Bromsgrove District Council said: "I'm really excited about this. It's a great way to encourage young people to travel in environmentally sustainable ways as they become more independent. What better legacy could we leave than inspiring a real passion for cycling in future generations, so they don't repeat the carbon intensive mistakes of the past."