A SCHEME which supports people across the region to travel by bike or on foot has celebrated a milestone.

The CityConnect programme – run by West Yorkshire Combined Authority – has now recorded more than five million trips by bike made by people on its network of routes.

Data is gathered from fixed counters along sections of pathways and segregated on-road routes. The network includes the Leeds and Liverpool Canal towpath between Riddlesden and Silsden.

Latest figures show that a combined 5,100,136 bike trips have been made across all CityConnect routes since the first one opened in 2016.

Over the years, more than £60 million has been invested in West Yorkshire cycling and walking infrastructure.

CityConnect also offers a range of free services, including adult cycle training and support for businesses, schools and communities to boost the number of people travelling by bike or on foot.

The combined authority aims to reduce the number of cars on the region’s roads as part of its bid to become a net zero carbon economy by 2038.

Tracy Brabin, West Yorkshire’s mayor, said: “I’m delighted to see the combined authority hit this major milestone, which shows just how many people in our region are already choosing to cycle and walk for at least some of their journeys.

“Greener and cleaner transport is absolutely key to my pledge as mayor to improve transport options for communities in our region.

“Through these CityConnect figures we can see how many people are happy to leave their cars at home and get out on their bikes, if we only support them to do that.”

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, Bradford Council leader and the transport portfolio lead for West Yorkshire, said: “These fantastic figures mark great progress in the combined authority’s aim to increase the share of active travel across West Yorkshire.

“We want to see walking and cycling become major forms of transport and the first choice for short journeys.

“Our aim is to see communities better linked by an integrated network of local transport, walking and cycling options.”

For more about the CityConnect programme, visit cyclecityconnect.co.uk.