1. ITV Report

Britain's 10 most cycle-friendly towns and cities

A cyclist in London, Britain's 56th most cycle-friendly location. Photo: Flickr / Duncan Harris under Creative Commons licence

Cyclists seeking the UK's most bike-friendly location should plump for Plymouth, according to a survey.

The Devon city came top on a range of criteria including bike thefts, accidents, cycle routes and bike-repair centres compiled by Virgin Money.

Second on the list was Norwich, followed by Bristol, St Helens in Merseyside, Huddersfield and Glasgow.

Somewhat surprisingly, Cambridge - noted as a cycling city - came only 60th in the list, hampered by the high number of cycle thefts and serious injuries.

Student bicycles outside Cambridge's Emmanuel College. Credit: Flickr / JohnSeb under Creative Commons licence

Similarly, theft and accident levels kept the City of London at only 50th and Greater London only 56th, despite the London Mayor's "Boris Bike" initiative.

Plymouth scored well for the low number of thefts, as well as a low number of accidents and cyclists killed or seriously injured.

The 10 most cycle-friendly towns and cities were:

  • 1. Plymouth
  • 2. Norwich
  • 3. Bristol
  • 4. St Helens
  • 5. Huddersfield
  • 6. Glasgow
  • 7. Dudley
  • 8. Ipswich
  • 9. Cardiff
  • 10. Walsall
A cyclist competes in an event in Plymouth, Britain's most cycle-friendly location, according to a survey Credit: Flickr / me'nthedogs under Creative Commons licence.

Graeme Tones, of Virgin Money, said:

"Cycling continues to increase in popularity and is a major contributor to improving general health and easing traffic congestion. Government and local councils are doing their best to help more of us to get on our bikes through tax incentives, cycle parks and cycle paths.

"Every town and city in the top 60 can be pleased. Reducing the level of accidents and serious injuries requires responsibility from cyclists, care from drivers and the desire from towns and cities to make it easy and safe for people to get on their bikes."