6 Walking and Cycling

6 Walking and Cycling

This section contains analysis and headline findings from the Scottish Household Survey questions on cycling and walking (including the Travel Diary part of the survey).

6.1 Cycling

  • Distance cycled on all roads is estimated to have increased from 310 million vehicle kilometres in 2012 to 329 million vehicle kilometres in 2013. [DfT traffic estimates 2013]
  • One per cent of journeys have cycling as the main mode of transport, a similar proportion to 2012. [Table SUM1]
  • The average cycling journey is 4.4 km in length. [Table TD5a]
  • 2.5 per cent of adults cycle to work, the highest proportion recorded in the survey, but not a statistically significant increase on 2012. 1.2 per cent of children cycle to school. [Table SUM1]
  • When asked why they don't cycle to work, the main reason given was 'it's too far' (37%) followed by the weather (20%). Fourteen per cent don't cycle because they don't have a bike and a similar proportion said there were too many cars on the roads. [Table 26]

6.1.1 Bicycle access

  • A third (34%) of households have access to a bicycle for adult use. Nineteen per cent have access to two or more. [Table 18]
  • Household access to bikes increases with household income and household size (two thirds of households with an income of £40,000 or more have access to one or more bikes). Bicycle access is also higher in rural areas than urban areas. [Table 18]

6.2 Walking

  • Since 2012 questions on walking are asked every other year in the survey so there are no updated figures for 2013. The next update will be for 2014. Results below are therefore for 2012.
  • Twenty three per cent of journeys reported in the SHS travel diary have walking as the main mode of transport. [Table SUM1]
  • The average walking journey is 1 km in length. [Table TD5a]
  • Thirteen per cent of adults walk to work and 52 per cent of children walk to school. [Table SUM1]
  • Two thirds of people had walked as a means of transport on at least one day in the last week. Twenty three per cent had walked as a means of transport on 6-7 days. [Table 3]
  • More than half (55%) of people had walked for pleasure at least once in the last week. [Table 3]
  • Frequency of walking decreases with age (18% of those aged 16-19 had not walked to go somewhere in the last week, compared to 65% of those aged 80+). [Table 25]
  • When asked what discourages them from walking more, the main reason given, other than nothing (60%) was health (16%) and weather (11%). [Table 43]