Thousands of Mansfield residents are set to be offered personalised travel information in hopes to improve air quality in the district.
Last year saw more than 4,500 residents in Bleak Hills, Ladybrook and Newton Town were offered the chance to receive free travel advice on their doorstep through the Nottinghamshire County Council’s 'Travel Choice' scheme.
The scheme encourages people to walk, cycle, use public transport and car share around the town.
This two-year scheme is funded by £845,000 from the Department for Transport with contributions from Nottinghamshire County Council.
The project aims to help residents, businesses, jobseekers and school leavers to explore different ways to travel around Nottinghamshire and help to improve local air quality, improve access to employment, tackle congestion and promote a healthier lifestyle.
Of the 850 households in Mansfield that accepted the offer of personalised travel information last summer, 73 per cent of those surveyed stated the conversation they had with the travel advisor was useful in helping them to consider their travel options and 35 per cent changed how they travelled as a result of the scheme, with more residents walking, cycling and driving less.
Next month the Travel Choice team will be returning to Mansfield to support a further 4,500 households in Forest Town and Mansfield Woodhouse to explore their travel options.
Postcards are currently being delivered to households in to let residents know that a travel advisor will be visiting at the end of the month over a period of three to four weeks. Households will be given the chance to ‘opt-out’ so a travel adviser doesn’t call.
Similarly, households can choose not to take part when a travel advisor visits them. Following on from conversations with residents, the Travel Choice team will send a free, personalised ‘travel pack’ full of local transport information and maps showing local walks, cycle routes and public transport offers.
Councillor John Cottee, committee chairman for communities and place said: “Many residents are already making sustainable transport choices and are also taking steps to improve their levels of fitness by walking or cycling. I hope this free travel advice will encourage even more people to consider what their travel options are and make some changes to the way they travel. Examples of this could be leaving the car at home for short journeys, catching the bus or car sharing.
“Encouraging more people to consider walking, cycling or giving public transport a go is part of the county council’s long-term plan to promote sustainable transport and improve air quality.”
The Travel Choice team is also working with students and jobseekers to support them into employment, apprenticeships or further education by informing them of their travel options. Local businesses are also getting involved with the chance for their employees to get advice, cycle training, wellbeing checks, cycle maintenance and more to encourage them to choose healthy and sustainable ways to commute to work.
A similar scheme is also being rolled out in Newark.
For more information on the project or for help planning a journey visit www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/travelchoice or contact one of the Travel Choice team firstname.lastname@example.org