Scotland's national walking and cycling charities have called for policy changes to get people more active and improve the country's health. Seven organisations who champion walking, cycling and sustainable transport are involved.

They want walking and cycling to become normal modes of transport for shorter journeys.

It is aimed at Scotland's political parties, who are preparing manifestos for the 2016 Holyrood elections

The charities want entirely segregated cycle routes in all cities and the consolidation of long-distance walking and cycling routes.

They have also called for several pilot schemes to be rolled out across the country, including reducing speed limits to 20mph in towns and cities, calming traffic around schools, and training children to be confident cyclists.

CTC Scotland, Cycling Scotland, Living Streets, Paths for All, Ramblers Scotland, Sustrans Scotland, and Transform Scotland are working on the project.

Ian Findlay, from Paths for All, said walking would improve people's physical, mental and social health and reduce health inequality.

"Walking is physical activity which almost anyone can do for free from their front door, but too often it is taken for granted," he said.

Mr Findlay added: "Continued commitment and investment are required from all parties to ensure active choices are the first and easiest choices for people."

John Lauder, director of Sustrans Scotland, said: "Now is the right time for the parties to commit to specific policies to increase levels of walking and cycling, as we believe this could be the game changer not only for Scotland's health but also for our economy and environment."

Colin Howden, director of Transform Scotland, added: "Our core aim is to see increased long term investment in active travel with a call for 10% of local and national transport budgets to be allocated to walking and cycling."

Source: BBC News

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