March 1 2005. "The launch of the Government's first National Motorcycling Strategy signals their commitment to properly integrate motorcycling within UK transport policy," said Frank Finch, motorcycle director of the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI) speaking at the launch of the National Motorcycle Strategy last month.

David Jamieson MP, parliamentary under secretary of state for transport, unveiled plans for the first National Motorcycle Strategy at a meeting of the National Motorcycle Council, held at the Department for transport (DfT) in London.

The strategy recognises that an increasing number of people are turning to motorcycles and scooters in order to beat congestion as well as riding bikes for enjoyment and recreation.

The DfT's announed strategy aims are to ensure that:

- Motorcycling is recognised as a mainstream mode of transport

- Transport planning and infrastructure decisions fully take motorcycling into account

- Motorcycle design continues to improve

- The attitudes and behaviour of both drivers and motorcyclists is focused on looking out for each other

- Pre-test and post-test training continues to improve, making it attractive
to riders
" the motorcycle test is reviewed, including a review of the delivery of the Direct Access Scheme

The strategy is based on recommendations made by the Advisory Group on Motorcycling in its Final Report to Government. The document, published in August 2004, was the end result of five years work between Government and
the motorcycling community.

Finch continues: "The RMI is very pleased to see the recommendations taken forward into the strategy. These measures will help improve rider safety, and contribute towards safeguarding the future of the market by making this efficient, cheap, and environmentally friendly mode of transport more
accessible and attractive to the wider public.

"The strategy has received widespread support from motorcycle retailers, rider trainers, rider groups, and UK motorcycle manufacturers. All of these groups worked together leading up to the launch of the strategy, and the RMI
will continue to be a key player in ensuring that the strategy is delivered."

Finch is looking forward to working with the various Government agencies and motorcycling community partners as the strategy is rolled out: 'Now that the Government has announced the strategy and a framework of actions, the
delivery mechanism is the next important hurdle. Plans are already in place to ensure that Government and the motorcycling community work closely together to fulfil their respective pledges."