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Better Transport: Mayor takes on the Six District Challenge


Better Transport: Mayor takes on the Six District Challenge

Dr Nik Johnson, Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority will be supporting Better Transport Week by taking on his own Six District Challenge on Monday 12th June, 2023.

The Six District Challenge involves getting around each of the six districts in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, within 24 hours, using only public transport and active travel routes.

The Mayor will have no prior plan regarding what routes or modes of travel he will take. It will be a unique opportunity to celebrate the progress made in delivering good public transport and identify challenges remaining in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Speaking in anticipation of the Six District Challenge, Dr Nik Johnson said, “As a children’s doctor I am thrilled to be supporting Better Transport and thoroughly looking forward to taking on the Six District Challenge.

“Good public transport, that is accessible to all, is so vital to our collective health. Not just because it reduces air pollution which harms our lungs and wider respiratory system. Research has shown that people who rate public transport as ‘good’ are close to three times more likely than those who rate it as ‘poor’ to be able to access vital public services such as health care, food shops or education. Moreover, they are also slightly less likely to report feeling dissatisfied with life or experience mental health problems.

“Good public transport isn’t just buses and trains, active modes of travel, such a walking and cycling, must be accommodated also. If exercise levels increased each week by a combined 30 minutes of cycling and 30 minutes of walking, there would be a reduction of around 6,100 deaths in England per year. That is hugely significant.

“I hope that the Six District Challenge will inspire some people to hop on a bus, train or bike and visit one of our wonderful cities, towns, or villages for the day. I also hope to highlight areas in which we absolutely must deliver better public transport provision for our region.”

Better Transport Week (12th – 18th June 2023) is a week-long celebration of sustainable transport. Pioneered by Campaign for Better Transport, it brings together industry partners, national and local government, sub-national transport authorities and NGO partners to highlight positive, innovative work being done across the transport sector. Campaign for Better Transport is the leading transport charity in England and Wales, with an unparalleled record of influencing sustainable public transport policy since its foundation in 1973.

Welcoming the Mayor’s challenge, Better Transport Campaign’s campaigns manager Michael Solomon Williams said:

‘We are encouraged to hear about Mayor Johnson’s Six District Challenge. He is setting an inspiring example to people in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough and right across the country. By using existing transport networks we show how important they are, while also highlighting how much more we all need. That is the essence of Better Transport Week. Perhaps if Dr Johnson keeps this up we’ll have train tickets prescribed on the NHS?”

Everyone can follow the Mayor’s journey as he tackles the Six District Challenge via the Combined Authority’s social media pages:

Twitter:  @CambsPboroCA

Facebook: Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority

Instagram: cambspboroca