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Bolt your bike!

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Shoppers in Broad Street Reading this morning will have noticed a marquee positioned opposite the Marks & Spencer store. As part of a wider collaboration with other agencies in the area, the Reading Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) are promoting a cycle safety and awareness campaign in the town. The marquee will be there until later this afternoon.

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Julie Wheeler, Neighbourhood Projects Officer with Reading Borough Council, who works alongside the Reading NAG said, “We did a survey which highlighted that a lot of people in the town have concerns about cycling safety, in particular cycling on the pavements. We also analysed the survey findings in more detail and looked into the issues surrounding theft and cycle safety. With this information, we joined forces with Safer Reading, Safer Roads Berkshire and Thames Valley Police to focus on these issues.

Today in town, we’re running a competition to win a cycle D-Lock. People simply have to enter their details and the first one picked at random wins. We’re also running a “spot the difference” competition for children, and the children who spot all 10 differences on the picture sheet are entered into the draw, with the prize being a £10 Tesco voucher.”

There is a wide variety of information leaflets available at the marquee concerning safety, in addition to pamphlets detailing cycle routes around Reading. Hi-visibility “slap-it” wrist and arm bands are available for pedestrians and cyclists alike to remain safe and seen at night. A registration scheme with the “Immobilise” database is also available to record the details of your valuable items as well as your cycles.

Julie added, “We have also secured funding from Safer Reading for cycle awareness signs which are now in-situ around the town. Look out for the signs with eyes on them – reminding people to be aware that cycle thieves operate in the area.”

safer roadsRichard Owen, the Operations Director with Safer Roads Berkshire was on hand to provide further information on cycle safety and awareness, but also added, “We work with all local Councils and provide a wide range of services from child car seat fitting schemes, promoting cycle safety, motorcycle safety and speed awareness.”

To find out more about this initiative, visit Safer Roads at www.saferroads.org and Urban Limits who also have an information service at www.urbanlimits.org

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