Owning and using a bike is much cheaper than running a car. You’ll need a bike of course, but you can pick up a second-hand one quite cheaply, sometimes even for free if someone is feeling generous. You’ll also need stuff like lights, a good lock and a helmet; and from time to time new tyres and other replacement parts. But again, you can often find good deals at cycle shops or through school.


Cycling is good fun and great exercise. Even if you are not particularly sporty you can get on a bike, travel to school and burn some calories at the same time.


You can travel independently; once your parents are confident that you know what you are doing, you can cycle to all sorts of places. There are over 100km of off-road cycle paths in Swindon – get hold of a local cycle map and have a look.


Cycling can be quicker than going by car, particularly for shorter journeys around town. You can use the cycle paths and get out of the traffic jams.


Cycling is good for the environment – no fuel, no pollution and no CO2 emissions, other than what you breathe out!

Your brain is important! – Always wear a cycle helmet, no matter how short the journey. Make sure it fits you properly, always fasten it securely, and replace it if it gets damaged.


Make sure drivers can see you – wear or carry something bright or fluorescent in the daytime and something reflective when it’s dark. You also need lights on your bike when it’s dark and in bad weather.


Stay alert – Keep checking around you for traffic, especially before riding out into a road from a driveway, path or side road, and always before changing direction. Don’t ride with headphones or use a mobile – you need all your senses to stay safe.


Ride safely and confidently – find out about National Standards training courses. Ask at school or check with the council. Level 3 training will teach you how to cope with busier roads and more complex junctions.


Stay in control – Don’t carry passengers on your bike or hang heavy bags on your handlebars as they will affect your balance. Put your stuff in a rucksack or use a rack or pannier bags on the back of your bike.