The Access Fund


We’re excited about the upcoming release of more information on the Access Fund.


What is the Access Fund?

The Access Fund will run for 3 years from 2017 to 2020. It is a pot of £580m of central Government sustainable transport funding, of which £60m is revenue funding.


The focus of the Fund is likely to prioritise

  1. Sustainable and accessible transport projects that will help people access work, training, education and services.
  2. Projects which help improve walking and cycling
  3. Approaches that have already proven to be successful


Strength to Strength

At Love to Ride, we’ve had much success with DfT funding – going back to the Cycling England days, then LSTF, the Transition Fund and now the Access Fund.  

Love to Ride has evolved from being a ‘Challenge’ programme to being a year-round behaviour change and encouragement platform. We now collect GPS data throughout the year, automatically, providing planners with very useful data.

We know we can continue to support Councils across England to achieve their cycling goals and help them to win funding through the Access Fund.


Adding weight to your local programme

We can add weight to your Access Fund application by including a Love to Ride programme that’s tailored to your area.  Benefits include:

  • A proven programme – that’s already been successful
  • A strong workplace and travel to work focus (likely to be a key element of the criteria)
  • Promoting and boosting your other cycling projects through the Love to Ride platform and community
  • Providing you with GPS data on where people are riding locally


Supporting your application

Writing an Access Fund application is a big job!  But we can help you with the cycling section.

We are very used to supporting local authorities in writing their bids, particularly the cycling encouragement sections.  If you’re interested in finding out how we can help, please get in touch. We’re happy to help!


Worth a read

Beth Hiblin is a well known Behaviour Change Consultant and she has written this nice blog post about getting prepared for the release of the Access Fund:


Want to know as soon as the Fund is announced?
As soon as more information about Access Fund criteria is released by the DfT, we’ll be straight on it. If you’d like to get an email from us as soon as we know, then…

Get alerted as soon as the Access Fund is announced!

GPS Data and Bicycle Infrastructure Planning

Gif showing GPS data

Are you interested in how you can use GPS phone app data to make better planning decisions?

At Love to Ride collect data via a smartphone app that automatically records people’s rides, walks and other transportation trips. People don’t need to press start or stop on the app at the beginning or end of their trip, it’s all done automatically.

This means that we get a lot of data on where people are riding their bikes, walking, etc. This data is then completely anonymized and can be used to make better planning decisions based on real data.


Things to be aware of…

Data collected with GPS phone apps provides a valuable opportunity to really understand how people are travelling around your area by bike. However, there are some key things to keep in mind as you look to analyse and utilize this data.

Check out this short video by Love to Ride CEO Thomas Stokell:

At work and can’t see the video? Email it to your phone here!

Interested in learning more? Get in touch – we’d love to hear from you.

The National Cycle Challenge – UK

Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 4.36.49 pm

This coming September, councils, advocates, cycling organisations and riders across the UK will be working together to give cycling a big push.


Three key aims:

  1. Getting more people to discover how easy and enjoyable riding can be
  2. Getting more people riding for transportation
  3. Collecting GPS data that can be used to make better decisions on where to put cycle infrastructure


We’re changing up the format this year

The Challenge will involve organisations, their departments, staff and the general public taking part in a fun competition to encourage more people to ride, more often. This year, people will be awarded points for riding and encouraging others to ride too. There will be prizes a plenty!

Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 4.43.32 pm


How your city can benefit?

Because this is a National Campaign, there are significant benefits and economies of scale that you can take advantage of.

The Challenge can help you to achieve your goals for cycling, promote your existing cycling initiatives to both existing and new riders, and collect valuable GPS data.


All UK councils are invited

Whatever your budget, you are invited to partner with us and promote the National Challenge in your area. If you do have budget, then we can really boost the results, outcomes and data for you.


Interested in learning more? Request some more information by emailing

Spring Excitement at Love to Ride

 Here are just three of the things we’re excited about at the moment:

Love to Ride is expanding to more cities and countries

We’re just about to launch Love to Ride in our 10th country, the Netherlands!
Amsterdam Rush Hour
After working for the last 8 years on developing the best online platform and programs for encouraging riding, we’re excited that the best of the best in the cycling world are choosing to work with Love to Ride.
Bicycle Transportation Alliance in Portland, Oregon has helped make Portland one of the most bicycle friendly cities in the USA. They recently switched to using the Love to Ride platform to run their online Bike More Challenge, too.
We’re now kicking off projects year round, and around the world from Australia and New Zealand to the EU and USA. We also had some very good initial meetings with potential national partners in Germany and France last week.

Funding for cycling in the UK

Transition FundIt’s great that the UK government are putting £20m towards sustainable travel this financial year with the “Transition Fund”.  We’re excited to already be working with 26 UK local authorities on local Love to Ride projects to provide a proven approach to encourage more people to ride, build a database of existing and new riders to promote local initiatives to, and gather valuable cycling data.
We’re looking forward to working with many more UK cities, towns and regions over the next year, setting the wheels in motion with June Bike Week – and building up to the UK’s National Cycle Challenge, which this year rolls out in September.

GPS Data

Love to Ride now collects GPS data automatically from apps like the Moves App which uses people’s smartphone accelerometer and GPS to calculate when someone is riding their bike, then automatically send this ride data to us at Love to Ride.Heat Map
This way, we know how often people are actually riding, where they are riding to and from, and what routes they are taking.  We can then cross reference this data with their profile data so we can show where recreational riders are riding vs where commuter riders are riding, and where female new riders are riding vs male regular riders, etc.
This data can provide real insight into where people are actually riding in your area, and can help you and your transportation planners to make decisions on the best places/streets to invest in bicycle infrastructure.
Happy riding!
Thomas Stokell 
CEO – Love to Ride
2016 National Bike Summit

2016 National Bike Summit Recap

Johann Weber is our Partnerships Manager, and is a PhD in Public Policy (exploring the implementation of bicycle infrastructure across the United States). He loves to help cities, regions, and workplaces get more people on bikes.

2016 National Bike Summit

Many tourists visit DC in March to enjoy the cherry blossoms (which are in full bloom this week, I’ve heard), others are there for an even more exciting occasion: The National Bike Summit! In it’s 16th year, the National Bike Summit is an annual gathering of North American advocates, industry, experts, and officials organized around an exchange of ideas and a bit of lobbying on Capitol Hill. The first few days offer plenaries and panels, and the final day gives the choice of lobbying or training sessions.

Love to Ride Sponsors 2016 National Bike Summit

This was Love to Ride’s first year as a sponsor of the National Bike Summit, and my fourth Summit as an attendee. My first Summit was 2011, a very tumultuous time for transportation policy, and in the years since that first Summit I’ve observed a number of changes which indicate important progress underway within the bicycle advocacy community.

In past years, attendees have been given critical ‘asks’ to take to their legislators such as federal transportation funding, safety programs, restrictive requirements or access legislation, and the like. The tone this year was markedly different, the result of a shift away from transportation as a priority legislative issue thanks to a much-needed five-year transportation funding authorization passed at the end of 2015 (the FAST Act). Instead, those of us who had the pleasure of sitting down with legislative staff on the final day of the Summit focused our time on thanking those who made the FAST Act possible and advocating for the PHIT Act*.

Equity was a Core Focus at the Summit

2016 National Bike Summit Gender Breakdown

Another evolution on display was the folding in of the Women’s Forum, which had been a more recent stand-alone event preceding the Summit, and a greater emphasis on diversity in Summit topics and presenters. Every breakout period offered at least one session on inclusion, engagement, or leadership in gender or racial equality, making those the common themes of the Summit for 2016. Compared to previous Summits, this was a welcome change toward a more equitable representation of communities of “invisible” riders as well as those who are interested but concerned, and may in fact stand to gain the most from bicycle advocacy.

It’s a great sign that we no longer need strong asks, thanks to years of persistent advocacy and steady progress in messaging and coalition-building. Equally exciting is the growing diversity of attendees and perspectives represented at the Summit. In future years I expect the bicycle advocacy community will face a different challenge: pushing beyond the moderate successes of the past twenty years and into a leadership role in transportation policy locally and nationally. As the bicycling community better engages and represents, the opportunity to lead will surely present itself. I hope we’ll be ready to take it, and bring bicycling to the forefront of the 2020s!

*A bill that would allow individuals to use pre-tax money from their Health Savings Accounts on fitness items, such as a bike.

Photo credit: Atlanta Bicycle Coalition