Transport scheme gets £700k boost

A sustainable transport scheme has been given the green light with funding of more than £700,000.

The Department for Transport is providing £64m towards schemes in the latest round of its Local sustainable Transport Fund.

And Go Smarter Northumberland has been awarded £710,000 to enhance and develop the successful delivery of the sustainable transport to work programme to further improve commuters’ travel to work.

The money will allow the scheme to extend job search horizons, support local businesses and local economic development whilst contributing to an increasingly low-carbon travel culture.

A Northumberland County Council spokesperson said: “The Go Smarter Northumberland programme for 2015-16 will build on and develop the successful delivery of the existing Go Smarter Northumberland sustainable transport to work programme.

“This currently targets communities in south east Northumberland where transport to work barriers and training opportunities can be addressed by encouraging greater use of sustainable travel modes.

“The 2015-16 programme will extend support for young adults to acquire new employability skills and addresses travel to work barriers in rural areas of Northumberland.”

Key elements of the programme include:

n providing personalised travel planning for job seekers and school leavers to help them extend the areas they can seek work and by encouraging sustainable travel;

n providing support to those starting a new job including a scooter loan service and prepaid bus tickets;

n  giving sustainable transport business advice to businesses in the south east of the county, but also those larger firms;

n giving opportunities for workers to try sustainable alternative modes of travelling to work and help staff to plan new, more sustainable journeys to work;

n and work with partners to deliver a package of offers to encourage more cycling to work, including cycle loans, Dr Bike sessions and cycling skills and confidence boost sessions.