People in Nottingham will benefit from improved green travel options thanks to the city gaining a share of £2.75m of Government funding.

It was announced today (Thursday 26 January) that Nottingham City Council, in partnership Nottinghamshire County Council, Derby City Council and other local delivery partners, have been successful in their bid for a share of the Department for Transport’s (DFT) Sustainable Travel Access Fund (2017/18 – 2019/20).

The £60m Access Fund, which was launched by the DfT last July, support sustainable transport projects that help to grow the economy by boosting levels of cycling and walking, and by improving access to jobs, skills, training and education. Nottingham will receive just under £1.5m of the £2.735m award, with Derby receiving just over £1m and Nottinghamshire £150,000.The money will be used over a three year period to encourage people to use sustainable modes of transport through two work streams.

The Metro Connected Communities work stream aims to encourage behaviour change in local communities to improve air quality and public health by providing:

  • Targeted households with personal travel plans to encourage the use of zero or low emission transport alternatives, helping to improve air quality in that area
  • Active Travel Services in communities to encourage more physical activity through walking and cycling by providing services such as cycle training, walking, rides and bike maintenance skills courses
  • A programme of active travel events, including working in partnership with British Cycling to support cycling events and encourage participation.

The Metro Jobs work stream will support local economic development, by improving access to work, jobs and skills with programmes to support employers, business innovation and those seeking employment by providing:

  • Workplace travel plan packages which will support 150 Nottingham employers, reaching 30,000 employees and include a business grant scheme for travel plan support and targeted personal journey planning for employees at 30 businesses in key investment areas
  • Jobseeker travel support to help individuals overcome travel barriers and connect to jobs. This will include the creation of drop in services and advice on travel services including, journey budding, cycle training, cycle loans and bike skills courses, supporting over 2,500 eligible jobseekers
  • A last mile delivery hub and “click and collect” network at community venues helping to reduce excessive freight traffic in some areas, which can deter cycling and walking along with support to encourage best practice and improve professional and technical skills in the low carbon transport sector.,.

This latest bid for funding will build on an already successful programme of activity across the Greater Nottingham area. Since 2011, millions of pounds have been invested to help support business growth and make it easier for local people to access employment, training and education through making sustainable travel journeys. This has included:

  • Developing the integrated Robin Hood Card making travel around Nottingham simple by bus, train and tram –
  • Introducing the Citycard Cycle hire scheme and cycle parking facilities to anyone in Nottingham
  • Nottingham’s pioneering investment in electric buses making Nottingham’s two bus based Park & Ride sites all-electric.
  • Investing £6.1m into Nottingham City Council’s Cycle City Ambition Programme

Councillor Nick McDonald, portfolio holder for Business, Growth and Transport at Nottingham City Council, said:

“We are really proud to have been successful in our bid for funding which will not only help us improve air quality to support the introduction of our Clean Air Zone in 2020 but also help us to encourage behaviour change and to improve access to work, jobs and skills with programmes to support employers and those seeking work .

“Nottingham has an excellent reputation for providing sustainable travel solutions. Using modes of transport such as cycling and walking can improve air quality and have significant health benefits for communities and can also improve access to jobs, education and training.”

“This is a great example of how partnership working in the Nottingham and Derby Metropolitan area is helping both cities to secure funding to help us to meet our air quality objectives.”