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Deputy Minister update

The Deputy Minister update to the Board included the following:

  • confirmation of additional funding for active travel, taking the total allocation for 2019 to 2020 to over £40 million.
  • progress on work on the Red Book, DMRB, 21st Century Schools and the exploration of bringing historical infrastructure back into use.
  • the Design and Delivery Guidance update, with a pre-launch event taking place in December.
  • exploring ways to assist local authorities in meeting their active travel duties. This includes a Wales wide consultation and engagement contract, an ambitious behaviour change programme and a training package for local authorities.
  • strengthening links between active travel and land use planning in any future legislative opportunities.
  • confirmation he had met with the Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government to discuss the links between Public Rights of Way and active travel routes. 

There was a brief discussion on 20mph and pavement parking in relation to enforcement. The Deputy Minister confirmed he had met with the police regarding this and will continue to challenge them on it. 

Healthy Weight: Healthy Wales

The Public Health Division introduced the Healthy Weight: Healthy Wales strategy which was launched in October 2019. The 10 year strategy will be broken down into 5 two year delivery plans and the first one, covering 2020 to 2022, is due to be published in February 2020. The Implementation Board will develop an outcomes framework to monitor interventions.

There are several links to active travel within the strategy themes. £5 million funding will be allocated this year to support the strategy and proposals will be discussed with a National Implementation Board, which will be chaired by the Minister for Health and Social Services. There will be a need to consider how delivery can support a focus on both prevention and intervention. There are important overlaps with schools programmes and work is underway through the Welsh Physical Activity Partnership to develop support for the new curriculum in the physical activity space.

The Board highlighted the need for electric cycles to be included in the Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) programme. Whilst they are not recognised as a low emission vehicle, there is massive potential for electric cycles to address health inequalities. 

The Board were informed the cap for employers using the Cycle to Work scheme has been lifted, which will enable employees to purchase more electric and specialised bikes.

Active Travel delivery: role of TfW and grant guidance for 2020 to 2021

The Board was given a presentation on the role of TfW in regards to active travel funding. The presentation set out the current process and the proposed new delivery model, along with an explanation of core funding allocations. 

It was raised that multi-year funding would be preferable to the current single year funding process. The Deputy Minister and Welsh Government officials understand these issues, however currently, Welsh Government is restricted to single year funding.

Default 20mph speed limit and pavement parking

There was a brief update to the Board on the 20mph and pavement parking task forces. Local authorities stressed the need to have clarity on any new rules to be introduced.

Active Travel to School National Advisory Group (ATSNAG) Update

PHW updated the Board on the Hands Up Survey. The scalability study has been completed in the three pilot local partnership areas (Cardiff, Swansea and the Vale of Glamorgan). The survey will be rolled out nationally from September 2020. 

The Board were informed that extending the Hands Up survey to secondary schools would not be taken forward at this time due to the potential duplication with other data collected from secondary level education. A validation study would also be required as the original only referred to primary schools.

Updated terms of reference

The Board was given a brief update on the amended Terms of Reference (ToR). It was agreed that meetings will move to being held quarterly from 2020, with alternate board meetings having a particular focus or theme.

Date of next meeting: 27 February 2020