Cycle Right, the National Standard for Cycle Training in Ireland, has been officially launched by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Shane Ross TD. Through a standardised cyclist road safety training course, cycling skills and road safety awareness will be delivered to school children nationwide. The National Standard – Cycle Right – is funded by the Department of Transport Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) and the Road Safety Authority (RSA). It has been developed through a steering group of Cycling Ireland, DTTAS, the RSA and others.
Cycling Ireland CEO Geoff Liffey is excited about the launch of Cycle Right saying: “I am very excited about the launch of Cycle Right; this is one of the most significant positive developments that we have seen in recent years, and will be a crucial tool in progressing cycling. By learning correct cycling skills, and learning how to cycle safely on the roads, more people will be encouraged to ride their bikes on a regular basis. By increasing the number of people cycling and increasing its visibility, our voice is louder in the move towards a more cycling friendly country.”
“While there have been successful cycle training providers operating in Ireland for years, Cycle Right, the National Standard for Cycling Training in Ireland, ensures that everyone is delivering the same message, and the standard of training received by everyone is the same. This project has been in development for over six years and I’m very pleased to see it finally come to fruition as part of our current strategy.”
Launching Cycle Right Minister Ross stated “I am delighted to announce that my Department is funding the national roll-out of Cycle Right – the new national cycle training standard – to primary schools for 2017. This new standard, that includes an on-road element of training, will ensure that we have, for the first time, a standardised level of cycle training around the country. It will also complete one of our policy objectives under the National Cycle Policy Framework.”
The Minister continued – “Since my appointment as Minister, I have become even more aware of the numbers cycling to work and the continued year-on-year growth in those numbers, particularly in Dublin. However, we do need to address the fact that we are not seeing any significant growth in the numbers cycling to school, these are the cyclists of tomorrow and we need to give them the skills and confidence to cycle to school now, so that when they graduate they will continue cycling for the rest of their lives. Cycle Right will give them those skills and that confidence.”
The Minister added – “I am particularly pleased to note that Cycle Right was developed by a partnership steering committee consisting of a wide-range of stakeholders, Cycling Ireland, the Road Safety Authority, An Garda Síochána, An Táisce Green Schools, Coaching Ireland and representatives of local authorities along with my Department. This has ensured that the Safety aspect of this training has been key in its development.”
“I understand that training will commence in early 2017 and I look forward to congratulating some of the first graduates in person in the Spring. It is important that parents support this initiative and use this opportunity to look again at how their children travel to school. I know, from my discussions with my colleagues the Minister for Health and Minister for Children that childhood obesity is a pressing issue and that active travel to school, be that by cycling or walking is very important in addressing this.”
Cycle Right is funded by the Department of Transport Tourism and Sport and the Road Safety Authority, and will be administered and managed by Cycling Ireland, the National Governing Body of Cycling in Ireland.