DEMONSTRATORS in Edinburgh called on The Scottish Government to double cycling and walking funding to £40m in next year’s budget.
The ‘We Want to See Double’ campaign, organised by Stop Climate Chaos Scotland (SCCS), held the protest on Wednesday afternoon outside government offices at St Andrew’s House.
Concerned citizens walked, cycled and bussed into the city centre to take part.
Among them was Emilia Hanna (28) who explained why she was involved:- “I have a young son growing up in the city and I know that children are especially affected by traffic fumes and congestion. I want him to have a healthy future and to be able to breathe clean air.”
Eva Groeneveld (31) also attended. She described the benefits of walking and cycling:- “More active lifestyles, quieter and less polluted streets, safer roads, less carbon, a better environment for future generations.
“Sometimes it’s hard to understand why politicians don’t jump at the opportunity to invest more in cycling and walking. It makes so much sense.”
Edinburgh council cycling spokesman, Councillor Jim Orr (SNP), added his support:- “I’m in favour of all and any increases in cycling spend. Yesterday in Edinburgh we agreed to put 7% of the transport capital budget towards cycling. It has increased from 5% to 6% in the last two years. I’d endorse this incremental increase approach for any council or government.”
Gail Wilson, coordinator of SCCS said:-“At the end of this month, we’ll meet with the Scottish Government’s Transport Minister, Keith Brown, and Climate Change Minister, Paul Wheelhouse, to discuss the campaign in more detail.
“We will continue to put pressure on them and John Swinney over the coming months to double the budget next year for cycling and walking.”
Police described the demonstration as “good spirited” and estimated attendance at between 120 and 140.
Submitted by David Graves