03/12/2012 Inside Out Yorkshire and Lincolnshire


03/12/2012

Will rising costs and congestion lead motorists to abandon their cars? And what a report into road and rail travel means for the region's transport planners.


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Transcript


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Good evening and welcome to Inside Out. Tonight it is all about

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transport. Here is what is coming up on the show. We motorists had to

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put up with congestion, a fuel price rises, insurance headaches.

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And parking charges. So why does our love affair with the car

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continued? I tried to find out as figures show that more of us are

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driving. Also tonight we find out what Transport Research means for

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those planning our roads and railways. For 70% of the population

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people need to use cars. I do not see that the car is coming to an

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end. There are two useful. But we need to think about the model of

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how we use them. And swapping four wheels for two

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wheels as we send polar explorer Paul Rose of on his bicycle. It is

:01:11.:01:21.
:01:21.:01:35.

For years experts have been predicting that we will fall out of

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love with our cars. But in spite of increasing costs and congestion

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research suggests that more people in our area and getting behind the

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wheel. But in the rest of the UK car usage is in decline. White is

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our love affair with the car still going so strong? I have been to

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find out, in my calf. There has been a slump in petrol

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sales... The drop is partly put down to more fuel efficient cars

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and higher prices at the pumps was a I remember I used to put a five

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bring to last me all week but now all fuel prices are the tip of the

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iceberg when it comes to the cost that motorists face. Even when

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you're not driving they hit you in the wallet. These neighbours have

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faced a stark choice between a 400% rise in charges to park outside

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their own home or a free for all with other motorists. So are you

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also deserting the car? The car is still king for that personal

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freedom it gives you. If you want a successful economy you need a

:02:51.:03:01.
:03:01.:03:01.

successful transport system. This is the reality for many people

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- the morning commute, the journey home, stuck in traffic. There is a

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theory that we have reached what some experts have turned Peak Car.

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That describes the moment when motorists abandoned their wheels in

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favour of other forms of transport. But frankly sitting here I'm not

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convinced. And neither is the organisation representing 15

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million drivers. Trends show that certain things are diminishing,

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mileage is dropping, people are trying to make one trip instead of

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three. That is mainly as a direct response to fuel prices. It is just

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the current trend at the moment. But when the economy will pick up

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interest in cars will start rising again. These commuters spend 86

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hours per year in traffic jams. That is almost four solid days. And

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right now I could not have picked a worse place to drive in the UK. The

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roads around Leeds and Bradford are the most congested in the country

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according to research. But the 7th worst in Europe. I fought by way

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through the traffic to and meet Dr David Milne from Leeds University's

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Department of Transport. Essentially the traffic is down to

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lack of alternatives that people have to travel around. What

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relevance does Peak Car have to Leeds and Bradford? There is the

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potential to reach that in places like this where the traffic routes

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are so constrained, probably more so than some other places. What you

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would then seek is the economy is suffering, more than anything else.

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Other cities with better transport systems would be moving forward

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where we are not. It is quite a controversial concept in the sense

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that it is based on some observations that have been made in

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the past decade or so, whether previously expected increases in

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cart used to not appear to have happened. So what is the answer?

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Leeds City Council does claim to be in charge of Dolores -- the largest

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urban area. So we need something like this super tram which of

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course now is not happening. Some kind of system like that to

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actually give people a real alternative. Meanwhile it is back

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to the future for Leeds transport system. Radford withdrew its last

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trolleybus service in 1972. Work on the new scheme in Leeds to recreate

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a trolleybus network is set to start in 2016. They used to run in

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Leeds 100 years ago. But they will not start services for six years

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and by that time traffic could have increased hugely. Some people away

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from large towns and cities have little choice but to own a car if

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they want to get about. This is the picturesque village of rural

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Lincolnshire, a beautiful place to be. Unless you are stuck here. This

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is the daily commute for Keighley Dobson. She has not passed a test

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and cannot afford a car. She works a few miles from home and this is

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the only way to get there that does not involve wearing out shoe

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leather. It is quite difficult, it is quite breezy and chilly and

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treacherous at times. The problem is that the nearest bus leaves from

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the neighbouring village two-and-a- half miles away. Along the dangers

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stretch of road far from ideal for cyclists and pedestrians.

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We're all just stockier now and there's no way to get to the

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nearest town about three miles away. You must feel isolated? We do. It

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is beautiful here but we would appreciate it more if we could get

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out now on them. The village with no bus service does have a bus stop.

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And Susan is leading a campaign to have the service reinstated. Last

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year we did not even know that the bus was going to finish until one

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of the bus drivers just happened to say that on 30th as of next week,

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you will lose your bus. There are a lot of elderly people and young

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people in the village. And they cannot get to their appointments

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and things in other villages. We have been in contact with lingered

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should County Council. I contacted the local MP who intent again

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contacted the county council but they said there was nothing they

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could do until the contracts for the bosses change again in 2014.

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The council says it will look at the possibility of providing a

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connected bus for people to use at fixed times if there is enough

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interest. Some motorists have to put up with congestion, fuel price

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rises, insurance headaches old and parking charges. That is the big

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topic here in Grimsby. The council proposed raising the charges for

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these neighbours to park outside their own homes, up from �15 to �80

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:08:48.:08:48.

a year. I used to pay for it took payments of �15 a month. For

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friends and family to come and visit they need a permit as well.

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But this is prime parking for town centre workers leaving residents

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fighting for as space. I am a Blue badge holder but I cannot always

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get part of my own street. The council had said that the scheme

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would be self financing and would not make a profit. It would keep

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none of residents from parking there. But then be scrapped the

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scheme leaving a free-for-all with no restrictions. The residents are

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now fighting to retain the scheme but with lower prices. Even after

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all that motorists have to contend with, Peak Car does not look as if

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it will be clearing the roads any time soon. Not until the

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alternatives to car ownership are more attractive and reliable,

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anyway. Still to come to light, we're on two wheels cycling coast

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:09:59.:10:01.

to coast on the way of the Roses. Wish me luck. Research suggests

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more people in Yorkshire are driving but when it comes to the

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national picture it is very different. It suggests some people

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are choosing to swap their car for other ways of travelling. The BBC

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transport correspondent has been looking at this. And seeing what

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they mean to the people who plant our transport networks.

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Building roads as controversial. But not building them could also be

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controversial. How do the planners get it right? How do they decide

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where to spend our taxes on road or rail? The only way you can ever be

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sure of is to beam yourself into the future. We all know how easy

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that is! When these fans watch their

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favourite series back in the 60s, we thought we knew how we would be

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travelling by 2012. There was talk of having a little personal car

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that flu. But science fiction got it wrong. Most of us now get around

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the same when we did 50 years ago. Ever since I can remember we have

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assumed that traffic is just going to get worse and worse. After all,

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:11:30.:11:32.

we really loved our cars. Or maybe not. There is a rumour

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going around transport circles but we're falling out of love with our

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four wheels. They have even given it a name - Peak Car. So what is

:11:43.:11:48.

Peak Car? Just look at UK traffic growth in the 60s and 70s when we

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could not get enough cars. By the 90s the trend was already slowing.

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And in 2002 average mileage per person stalled. Is the love affair

:12:02.:12:07.

with the car cooling down? What seems to be happening in many

:12:07.:12:13.

countries including even America, is that traffic growth due to car

:12:13.:12:18.

use simply is not going ahead at the same rate as it used to.

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Inside Out has been given the first piece of indexed research into Peak

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Car in the UK. This report is full of surprises, it shows that whilst

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some of us are driving more than ever, others are dramatically

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Take young men, for example. Now, when I was young, I couldn't wait

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to get my hands on my dad's mark 4 Cortina with reversing lights.

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Passing your test was seen as a rite of passage, but apparently

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that is changing. Market trader Lee Vernon is 19, but he won't be

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adding to the traffic around Mansfield, Nottinghamshire any time

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soon. He is selling up because he has just been quoted �2,800 to

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insure his three-wheeler. I really love it. It's a great looking car,

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a really classic car. They're really rare, but the insurance is

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too much and I can't afford it. research shows Lee is not alone.

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Young men are driving 2,000 miles a year less than they were in 1995.

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Women, though, young and old, are actually driving more than they

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used to. So what is going on? think what's changed, attitude wise,

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everybody just gave up and got that used to usig Facebook and their

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phones and sitting around, or using public transport. I don't think

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anybody cares about cars anymore. So what else has the report found?

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Well, this is the rainy 7.16am from Warwick Parkway to Marylebone. Over

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the last two years the numbers using this line have gone up by a

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staggering 40%. And according to the report that is in line with a

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national trend. Since the mid-'90s the distance the average person

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travels by rail has soared by more than 60%. The last time the trains

:14:18.:14:28.
:14:28.:14:29.

were this busy was during the war. The key croak we have seen it is

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business travel in the morning, we can do some work, and the other is

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in leisure travel, where it has become much cheaper at the same

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time as fuel prices are increasing. The value equation is suddenly

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tilting towards rail. While business travel by rail is up,

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company car mileage is down - by 40% between 1995 and 2007 - so that

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is before any recession. Scrapping tax breaks made the difference and

:15:00.:15:10.
:15:10.:15:10.

it has had a big impact on traffic in London. Fairfax Hall runs a

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London company making specialist gin and vodka and thinks he has

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distilled the perfect formula for company travel. Whenever they need

:15:16.:15:20.

a car or van they book it from a car club and pick it up from a

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:15:30.:15:34.

designated parking space 15 minutes later. We are a small start-up

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business and like many you do not have a large motor money, so we

:15:40.:15:43.

invested it in to the distillery itself. Investing money into a van

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did not seem like good use of capital. The other benefit is

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flexibility. You can jump in what is essentially a brand-new vehicle

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and drive it at 15 minutes' notice. So here is a question, what does

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all this research mean for the future of cars and the car

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industry? After all, we have had a bit of a boom recently. The UK is

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on course to produce more cars than at any time since 1972. But that is

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not because we are all buying ourselves a new motor. 80% are

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being exported - these Minis are heading to Asia and South America.

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Last month in London at the RAC's Future Car Challenge, another

:16:24.:16:34.
:16:34.:16:37.

famous sci-fi face was in no doubt what the future holds. I do not see

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that the car is coming to an end, I think there are two useful. But we

:16:43.:16:46.

need to rethink the model of how we'd used cars. Electric cars are

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part of that. Inner-city it makes much more sense. And it is not just

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the car industry that will be looking at this research. The

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Department for Transport is planning a major road building

:16:59.:17:02.

programme based on their model that traffic will increase by a 44%

:17:02.:17:06.

increase over the next two decades or so. But what if they have got it

:17:06.:17:09.

wrong? After all, since 1989, successive governments have

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overestimated traffic growth. This is the range of predictions. The

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red line is what actually happened. There is always a risk that

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forecasts will be wrong but the key thing than the Department of

:17:30.:17:34.

Transport for customers is that it takes a wide and rich set of data,

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he ensures that it is rigorously analysed. There's a lot of useful

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things in his research for us to go and look at but I am not convinced

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the year shows we have reached Peak Car. The Government points out the

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UK population is predicted to grow by another 10 million in the next

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25 years. And the RAC Foundation, who helped fund the report, says

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that means we are still going to need more roads. This is not the

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end of the car. People will need to use cars unless they have railways

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and buses available, most people will not have those things. Almost

:18:13.:18:16.

half a century ago when Star Trek started this is what we thought

:18:16.:18:20.

travel in the 23rd century might look like - and it is pure '60s. It

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just shows how difficult it is to predict the future. But the danger

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is assuming it will look like an enlarged version of the present.

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More car traffic has been the transport story of the past 50

:18:36.:18:44.

years, it may not be the story of the next 50. What does this button

:18:44.:18:54.
:18:54.:18:56.

If you would like to know more about her car traffic has changed

:18:56.:19:03.

in various areas of the country, lock on to the website. If you're

:19:04.:19:09.

getting fed up with your car, why not swap four wheels for two. The

:19:09.:19:13.

coast-to-coast cycle road has only been open for two years but has

:19:13.:19:18.

already proved one of the most popular bike routes in the country.

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We've sent Paul Rose to find out why do three of the -- wider Way of

:19:23.:19:28.

the Roses cycle weight is proving such a hit. There's nothing I like

:19:28.:19:31.

more than a challenge from braving the wilds of Antarctica, to

:19:31.:19:34.

plumbing the depths of the sea. In my role as Vice President of the

:19:35.:19:37.

Royal Geographical Society I've been to some of the world's most

:19:37.:19:44.

spectacular sites. But there are few things that can compare to the

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bracing thrill of the sea air in Britain especially when an exciting

:19:47.:19:51.

challenge looms much closer to home. Over the next few days I'm going to

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be taking on the Way Of The Roses plugging into cycle mania on a

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popular route which cuts through Lancashire and Yorkshire,

:19:56.:19:59.

showcasing some of the best landscape both counties have to

:19:59.:20:03.

offer. It's a 170-mile trip which goes from the west coast here in

:20:03.:20:12.

Morecambe to Bridlington on the east, so I've come ready prepared.

:20:12.:20:17.

Have got my map, warm hat and gloves, evening wear, and some

:20:17.:20:21.

dancing shoes! So, all togged up it's time to get this show on the

:20:21.:20:26.

road. Wish me luck. So, with a kindly wave from one of Morecambe's

:20:26.:20:31.

favourite, sons, I'm heading east. Since the Olympic cyclists struck

:20:31.:20:34.

gold, and with Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish dominating the Tour

:20:34.:20:37.

de France, the sport of cycling has been shifting through the gears so

:20:37.:20:42.

quickly it seems it's now in danger of becoming a national obsession.

:20:42.:20:45.

It's going to take more than the setback of Lance Armstrong's doping

:20:45.:20:48.

scandal to kill this kind of enthusiasm, and as I head of on the

:20:48.:20:56.

first leg of my adventure, it's not hard to see why. I always say that

:20:56.:21:01.

I am as excited when Ali the front door on a simple journey as when I

:21:01.:21:07.

go on a polar journey, and it is absolutely true. This is a lovely

:21:07.:21:12.

Jenny, the start of something brand new. The route is part of the

:21:12.:21:14.

sustainable transport charity Sustran's attempt to establish a

:21:14.:21:16.

network of bike friendly travel routes, linking communities without

:21:16.:21:19.

the need of a car. On the western side, it meanders through Morecambe

:21:19.:21:22.

and Lancaster before breaking out into the countryside at the

:21:22.:21:25.

spectacular Crook of Lune. It feels good to have put a few miles behind

:21:25.:21:28.

me, but with the Pennines rapidly approaching, I grab a fellow

:21:28.:21:35.

cyclist for a bit of advice on what to prepare for. I'm thinking ahead

:21:35.:21:41.

to the hill at Settle, what is it like? Tough, it really tough.

:21:41.:21:45.

thought he would say was a piece of cake. You'll need a piece of cake

:21:45.:21:54.

When you get the top! By then, you will not be in Lancashire any more.

:21:54.:21:58.

I would have made the border. You're almost at the border here.

:21:58.:22:01.

Swapping Red rose for White, I'm soon safely over the great divide

:22:01.:22:05.

and heading into the heart of the Yorkshire Dales. Coming up on the

:22:05.:22:07.

horizon is Settle, where there's plenty of opportunity to stock up

:22:07.:22:15.

on supplies. This is a beautiful place to stop but also the place

:22:15.:22:19.

for one of the greatest challenges because there is an enormous hole

:22:19.:22:26.

right up there. I'm going to give it a go. Seems all right so far up!

:22:26.:22:30.

With a height above sea level nearly half that of Mount Snowdon,

:22:30.:22:33.

it's reckoned to be the toughest section of the route. Well, that's

:22:33.:22:43.
:22:43.:22:43.

enough excitement for one day. It really starts to bright and

:22:43.:22:49.

certainly plays the cobwebs out. But smooth road ahead, I am ready.

:22:49.:22:53.

Now's the chance to get my breath back. And once I've got a few more

:22:53.:22:57.

miles under my belt I'll be looking for somewhere to spend the night.

:22:57.:23:01.

While I'm catching up on a bit of R and R, a few miles off the official

:23:01.:23:09.

route it's nice to see the younger generation hard at work. What we

:23:09.:23:13.

are doing is teaching the children basic cycling skills so they are

:23:13.:23:17.

able to handle their bikes with confident, so there will be able to

:23:17.:23:22.

ride, be safe and be competent cyclists. Established just over two

:23:22.:23:25.

years ago to capitalise on the bike boom, Ilkley Cycle club has now

:23:25.:23:33.

become one of the fastest growing clubs in the country. We have 312

:23:33.:23:36.

used members know which is quite incredible for small town.

:23:36.:23:44.

before long, a few of these could be dreaming of going for gold.

:23:45.:23:50.

like Mark Cavendish. I like Chris Whyte and Bradley Wiggins. It's a

:23:50.:23:53.

Sunday today and perhaps the busiest day of the week for those

:23:53.:23:56.

who like to get out and about. So I'm up bright and early to see

:23:56.:24:00.

who's on the road. Today my journey will take me from the Yorkshire

:24:00.:24:03.

Dales through the Vale of York and to the threshold Yorkshire Wolds, a

:24:03.:24:06.

trio of delights best savoured under your own steam. The route has

:24:06.:24:09.

attracted at least 14,000 coast to coasters in its first two years,

:24:09.:24:16.

among them one of the enthusiasts who helped create it. Have you seen

:24:16.:24:21.

her real upsurge in cycling? Yes, people take it up because of the

:24:21.:24:26.

Tour de France, because of the Olympics. We have seen cycling on

:24:26.:24:31.

the front page of newspapers rather than the back page. In business,

:24:31.:24:35.

cycling is becoming the new Golf, people going out on a bike to make

:24:35.:24:42.

deals. What is your feeling on maintaining this level of interest?

:24:42.:24:46.

We have to look at local councils and that government putting in

:24:46.:24:49.

place training scheme so that people get the safety training. We

:24:49.:24:54.

have to keep this going to make sure this perfect wave carries on.

:24:54.:24:57.

With the mist closing in and Martin due back home for a well-earned

:24:57.:25:01.

Sunday roast, it's time for both of us to call it a day. I can't wait

:25:01.:25:08.

for what tomorrow might bring. Day three, I'm up early, a bit of a

:25:09.:25:13.

change in the weather, but I have stopped him Pocklington to meet a

:25:14.:25:20.

couple for whom cycling is a bit of a way of life. Nice to meet you.

:25:20.:25:23.

Keith and Anne Benton have nearly 150 years of cycling experience

:25:23.:25:30.

between them, and even as veterans their annual mileage is awesome.

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keep a record and the showers so far we have done just over 7000

:25:35.:25:43.

miles. He caught the bug first? suppose I did really. I think my

:25:43.:25:49.

father promised me a bike if I passed my eleven-plus. And so, from

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then, once I had a bike, by to school and then friends had bikes

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so we started going out. How did it start for you both? When we were

:26:00.:26:06.

first courting, she borrowed her brother's bike and we cycled six or

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seven miles and back. Could you join me for a bit of this? We will

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take you to Driffield and a cafe. We would love to. What is it that

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cycling really gives you? I was 12 when I bought my first bike and are

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as able to get out and enjoy the countryside, which normally was not

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accessible. But to have a bike, I had the wind on my back and the sun.

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It was sheer bliss. Could we saw the benefits of cycling? Over the

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years, we have seen folks come in who are overweight and they have

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started cycling, and they have to shed the pounds. You can shed the

:26:56.:27:03.

Pounds will drinking tea and eating cake! Yes. We cycle to eat! So,

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with another enjoyable pitstop over it's time for us to go our separate

:27:06.:27:10.

ways, and I can start reeling in the rest of the miles on my own.

:27:10.:27:12.

Pocklington, Tibthorpe, Burton Agnes and Hutton Cranswick, it's

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like poetry reeling off these wonderful East Yorkshire names. My

:27:20.:27:25.

last. Before the end. But looking at the weather, it will be a while

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before I see it. Time to get these aching bones back in the saddle.

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And so to my ultimate destination 165 miles behind me and just five

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more to go. I'm getting excited, I can almost smell the sea air. It

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has given me a real boost. And here I am at journey's end. With a final

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flourish along the shores of a deserted North Sea, I have to admit

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I'm kind of sad I've simply run out of cycle path to use up. I'm here

:27:58.:28:03.

after a brilliant three days. Really, a lovely three days. The

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thing that has been on my mind throughout the whole journey is

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just how accessible litters. It is a lovely, easy read going through

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lots of lovely countryside, it is well marked, and anybody can do it

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on any bike at any level of fitness. If you, this time of year, you get

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the beach to yourself! If that has inspired you to get on your bike,

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Toby Foster finds out if motorists are ready to abandon their cars as they feel the pinch from rising costs and congestion. And Richard Westcott investigates a new report into road and rail travel and finds out what it means for the people who plan our transport network. Also the explorer Paul Rose takes on an epic Yorkshire bike ride to see how the 'Olympic effect' is influencing our views on cycling.


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