It is for local authorities to determine prioritising investment in local transport. The Government are taking steps which were outlined in the Prime Minister’s cycling and walking plan, published in July, with a £2 billion budget.
The Minister will be aware that areas experiencing the largest growth in new housing are some of those most interested in investment in cycling and walkways. With Central Bedfordshire Council and Bedford Borough Council experiencing some of the highest growth in the country, will the Minister give special consideration to their active travel network plans?
My hon. Friend’s county borders mine and I know it has very ambitious plans, with Bedford Borough Council, to enable it to develop a local cycling and walking infrastructure plan that is positive and engages lots of people. Where possible, we are working with local authorities, but it is for local authorities within Bedfordshire to work in tandem and consider what sort of approach is appropriate for the locality. Should they wish my Department to offer any extra advice, we will, of course, be happy to do so.