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Pedal power: meet Stroud’s first cycling mayor

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James Jeffery has been chosen as the first Bicycle Mayor for Stroud district and will pedal the way forward for safer cycling initiatives within the district for everyone.

James will be part of a wider network of bicycle mayors – a global cycling network that encourages bicycle mayors from across the world to collaborate and share ideas. The mayors stand for a two-year term and actively engage with industry, Government and residents to promote positive cycling initiatives and showcase cycling on a global and local platform.

James has established a strong foundation in Stroud – having already worked in various physical activity jobs, including as a school games organiser for Stroud district. He aims to encourage more people to take up cycling in the district, particularly children, with the aim of developing confident residents who cycle.

“I’m really looking forward to my new role as Stroud Bicycle Mayor and my aim is to embed cycling as a key component of travel and leisure in Stroud and bring together our diverse community through leisure and business links,” said James. “I also hope to make safe cycling more accessible to children of all ages in Stroud.”

Stroud District Council aims to encourage more cycling within the district and looks forward to working with James as the new Bicycle Mayor. SDC has invested £200,000 over the past four years on walking and cycling infrastructure and projects, and a further £200,000 has been pledged to similar projects in the next year, with the council looking to encourage further walking and cycling schemes.   

SDC Environment Committee Chair, Chloe Turner said: “We are really looking forward to working with James as the first Bicycle Mayor for Stroud. As well as supporting the county council in its cycling and walking infrastructure plans for the district, we are keen to promote cycling and remove barriers for all those who want to use this healthy, cheap and low carbon way to get around.”

Committee Vice-Chair Robin Drury-Layfield added: “I am delighted with this appointment – James is a committed advocate for active travel of all kinds, and he has a vision of how to get the whole district on their feet and moving. Cycling is the most effective way for so many of us to make an impact for the better on the world around us. It leads to quieter streets, busier town centres and improved public health. Next time you see someone riding a bike instead of driving, give them a big thumbs up – they are doing their bit.”

SDC Council Plan aims to continue to support development of integrated active travel (walking and cycling). SDC will work with Gloucestershire County Council to develop, and with local communities and stakeholders to implement three Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIP) for Stroud; Cam, Dursley and Uley; Wotton-under-Edge and Kingswood, support safe cycling, and identify and prioritise the main strategic cycling routes.

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