Sustrans are also quick to point out,
"Although the project will focus on girls, it does not mean that boys will be marginalised. In fact, they will also benefit from the various bike loan schemes and cycle storage and lockers that this funding will bring about."
My biggest concern is that £230, 000 is not a lot of money for a national initiative like this if it’s going to have any real impact. One of the things that I think make young people reluctant to cycle to school at the moment are the lack of facilities (storage, security, CCTV) at schools and also the lack of safe routes to schools (cycle pathways etc…). To build, modify and to fund facilities like this can potentially cost a huge amount of money.
One of the other ways that I think we can encourage more young people to start cycling is to start including more cycling and mountain biking in school PE and extra-curricular activities. I know of some recent initiatives (for example North Berwick High School in East Lothian) where the schools has successfully been able to buy a set of Mountain Bikes through Big Lottery funding and now has a thriving mountain bike club for staff and students.
Let’s hope the scheme is a success and gets more young people (both boys and girls) outside and active.