A SOUTHAMPTON cycling group is asking election candidates to improve cycling in the city and combat climate change.

As the election of new ward councillors to Southampton City Council approaches, Southampton Cycling Campaign has created a 10-point manifesto it is asking candidates to endorse.

The established group says it will be contacting all candidates ahead of the election.

In the manifesto, the group requests candidates to build a network of safe cycle lanes if elected, as well as making sure that cycling networks are included in any transport plans.

It also calls on them to implement safe cycle routes with all future infrastructure developments, ensure that schools and workplaces have safe cycle access, and make sure there are enclosed cycle parks with controlled entry in the city centre.

A spokesperson for the group said: "We believe the case for improving cycling infrastructure is overwhelming.

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"So to improve fitness, health, and air quality, and to combat climate heating we expect a good response from the candidates. We think it is so important that the new Council will push forward the cycling agenda."

The manifesto also includes candidates supporting cycle training at schools and for adults, bike maintenance facilities, and the introduction of cycle priority lanes on all National Cycle Network routes where the route is along an A road or busy B road.

It says that by adopting these policies, the candidates would be cutting carbon use, and helping to combat global warming, "improving air quality, reducing noise pollution and reducing the need for more expensive road development".

The spokesperson added: "We would also like to know if you the candidate are in favour or against the following specific proposals in Southampton: the Northam bridge proposal, implementing or improving cycle lanes, a much better use of money than the Northam bridge proposal."

The group has been working for more than 30 years to promote cycling in the city and surrounding areas.

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