New research published recently by the Institute for Employment Studies, an independent, apolitical, not-for-profit, international research centre shows that the UK’s Cycle to Work Scheme outlines the numerous health and social benefits of the scheme, describing the benefits for both employers and employees.
The authors review key evidence to develop a model to estimate the social value of the Cycle to Work Scheme. Using a conservative estimate that five per cent of scheme participants cycle for 30 minutes more a working day as a result of their involvement in the scheme, they estimate that the social benefit from reduced absence and increased physical fitness to be £72 million a year. This amounts to more than twice the estimated cost to the Treasury in lost tax and National Insurance. This is in addition to the environmental benefits of cycling.
The weight of the general evidence on cycling and health is both substantial and clear. Cycling is a form of physical activity that clearly has a significant and positive effect on participants’ health. It improves their physical fitness and therefore reduces their risk of a range of diseases including diabetes, heart disease and some forms of cancer.
The report concludes that the scheme is economically and socially beneficial, and, particularly if combined with infrastructure improvements,it can continue to play a positive role in a comprehensive and cost effective strategy to increase the number of cyclists and volume of cycling in the UK.
You can download a copy of the full report using the link below. It is recommended reading!