UK National Cycle Network: an assessment of the benefits of a sustainable transport infrastructure

In 1995 Sustrans, the sustainable transport charity, was awarded a major grant of £43.5 million of National Lottery funds by the Millennium Commission for the UK National Cycle Network (NCN). This flagship project was officially opened in June 2000 with 8,000 kilometres of cycling and walking routes passing through the centres of major towns and cities and linking urban areas with the countryside. A further 8,000 kilometres are due to be completed by 2005 (Sustrans, 2000). The initiative is a demonstration project; the NCN routes provide the basis for the development of local area networks. The principal aim is to encourage people to take up cycling for the first time, or to start to cycle again.