Birmingham Walking and Cycling Index

Formerly known as Bike Life, this is the UK's biggest ever study of walking, wheeling and cycling.

More people walk five days a week than travel that often any other way (including driving). Birmingham is moving away from car dependency and embracing the benefits to health, air quality and the economy which a genuinely sustainable transport network affords.

Every year, walking and cycling in Birmingham results in:


serious long-term health conditions prevented

£454.5 million

in economic benefit for individuals and the region

37,000 tonnes

of greenhouse gas emissions saved

Icon of navy car.

Up to 220,000

cars taken off the road every day

A woman in a high-vis and helmet smiles as she stands next to her bike.


Cycling was never available to me as a child. My mum didn’t cycle, my aunt didn’t cycle, my nanny didn’t cycle. So naturally I was never taught to cycle.

Fast forward 25 years, and I decided I needed to learn to ride a bike. At the time, I was working at Sandwell Primary Care Trust, they told me about cycling lessons that were available. So I took the plunge and the teacher had me peddling for the very first time! I remember screaming all the way down the path. I don’t think I’ll ever forget that first feeling of just complete freedom. It was amazing.

I kept on with the lessons for a few weeks, but life got in the way. Fast forward another 12 years, and my two-year-old was learning to cycle. This spurred me on to get back on my bike, with the support of my husband, Mark. It took a while to build my confidence again, but after that I’ve just kept going.

Now I want to create a city where my little boy, Esa, can grow up safely. And where his first choice to get around the city is by walking, scooting, or cycling and not by jumping into a car.

Birmingham Walking and Cycling Index report front cover

Download the Birmingham Walking and Cycling Index

See Birmingham's vision for walking, wheeling and cycling.

Download the report.

This report is also available in a text-only format.

Birmingham and the West Midlands through the years

This is the fifth time we've assessed active travel in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Download the previous reports:

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