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400 more people cycling to work

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Employers are taking advantage of the Isle of Man Government’s Cycle to Work tax exemption and helping staff stay healthy.

The measure was introduced by the Treasury in April 2017 as part of the 2017-18 Budget by Treasury Minister Alfred Cannan MHK.

The change was designed to improve the fitness and health of Island residents and enables businesses to take advantage of a benefit in kind tax exemption by buying a bike on behalf of an individual.

More than 400 transactions have taken place so far, with all sales having to be completed through on-Island bike shops as part of the exemption rules.

Treasury Minister Alfred Cannan MHK said:

‘Cycle to Work has proven very popular, but I’d like to invite more employers to get involved - it’s good for people’s health and wellbeing, it’s good for the local economy and it’s good for the environment. I would encourage businesses to look carefully at how it can benefit their workforce.’

He added:

‘A lot of work is also taking place around the Active Travel Strategy, which was approved by Tynwald last year, and a number of new routes and features are being developed to help more people use cycling as a means of everyday travel.’ 

A Workplace Wellbeing conference, organised by Public Health, was held last month at the Mount Murray Golf Club, and attracted more than 80 delegates representing public and private sector organisations. Among the speakers was Paul Morrison, from UK charity Sustrans, which has been recruited to support the delivery of the Active Travel Strategy and increase the numbers of people cycling and walking regularly.

Director of Public Health Dr Henrietta Ewart said:

‘We need to transform our local environment to make healthy choices the easy choices ­­- and this includes encouraging people to travel on foot or by bike.

‘This will help fulfil the aims of the Active Travel Strategy, and reduce obesity. More importantly, it will translate to positive health outcomes for people who take up a more active lifestyle.’

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