Sykes welcomes trial of cycles on trams

Date published: 27 January 2024

Leader of Oldham Council’s Opposition and Greater Manchester Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Transport councillor Howard Sykes MBE has welcomed news that Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) will trial a scheme for push bikes to be allowed onto trams.

Councillor Sykes said: “This is excellent and long overdue news for public transport users in Oldham and Greater Manchester.

“The Liberal Democrats believe we should be making public transport as accessible as we can to encourage more people to make journeys on the tram. 

"Cycling is an increasingly popular and cost-effective way to get about. 

"Our public transport services should adapt to encourage that.” 

Metrolink currently allows foldable bikes on trams. 

Certain sizes of mobility scooters are also allowed, subject to a permit scheme. 

TfGM is currently considering permitting non-folding bikes on Metrolink services on a trial basis. 

Consideration is also being given to adapted bikes used as mobility aids, scooters and a broader range of mobility scooters than are currently permitted.

Councillor Sykes said: “Clearly considerations need to be made to make sure that bikes can be stored safely and in a way that doesn’t add delay or disruption to other passengers. 

"But this is very good news indeed and something I have been calling for TfGM to look at for a long time.”

The trial is expected to be undertaken later this year with a report on its success to be brought before Greater Manchester’s ‘Bee Network’ committee in the summer. 

The committee will then decide whether the move becomes permanent.   

Committee member Sykes said: “Similar trials have been a success in the past. 

"I previously called for a trial allowing dogs on trams, a move that was made permanent after a successful trial period. 

"This bikes trial is an excellent opportunity to improve our public transport offer.”

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