Transport (December 2019)

Key Messages
  • Transport provides access to jobs, education, services, and recreational activities. There are clear links between transport and social exclusion. Overcoming barriers to opportunities and services is a key issue. Not everyone owns a car or has access to a car, and it is forecast that car ownership will decrease in the future due to social behavioural changes and also with concerns around health and climate change impacts. We need a whole integrated transport offer which works for everyone including disabled and vulnerable people that improves quality of life and encourages independence.  Consideration of the relationship with planning and regeneration is key so that new developments do not encourage car dependency and where possible we can reduce the need for people to travel.

  • Electric vehicles are increasingly becoming a familiar sight and will make a positive contribution to reducing emissions caused by the combustion engine, however, it’s important that electric and autonomous vehicles aren’t seen as a panacea to existing transport issues in Wirral and the wider Liverpool City Region (LCR). Electric vehicles will still contribute to congestion and will also have an environmental impact. A window of opportunity exists over the next few years for politicians and decision makers in Wirral, regionally and nationally to advocate for increased investment in facilities for active travel such as walking and cycling and mass transit options such as buses and trains.

  • As ways of working change with more remote and agile working as well as the rise of online shopping the needs of our transport system are likely to change. We cannot second guess how technology will develop, but we must be open to new technology in relation to transport and be aware of any potential risks/benefits.

  • An efficient, well maintained and safe network is essential to support the delivery of the Council’s economic growth and regeneration plans. Residents, business and visitors must be able to get to where they need to go safely and efficiently. Our road and rail network need to be able to support businesses with well-maintained and well-managed infrastructure which enables reliable journey times. An efficient and attractive bus network is reliant on a well maintained and managed highway.

  • Transport is changing and becoming more focussed on the principle of “mobility” across all modes and providers rather than single dominant modes of transport (e.g. cars). However, the vast majority of Wirral residents still travel to work via a car or van (72%) or motorcycle with only 15% traveling to work via public transport. (Train 8%, Bus 7%).

  • Car availability is generally higher in Wirral (68% with a car/van and 32% no access to car/van) compared to the Liverpool City Region (LCR) (63% with a car/van and 37% no access to car/van) and according to data published by the Department for Transport, then 24% of households in England have no car/van.

  • It takes, on average, a Wirral resident 23 minutes for non-car journeys to travel to a large economic centre. This is 3 minutes faster, on average, than in 2014 (an improvement of 11%) and is a shorter average commute time overall than the Liverpool City Region and North West.

  • Increasing road traffic is a key challenge for Wirral with the second highest volume of traffic in the Liverpool City Region behind Liverpool. Noting the context of having the second highest population also we have seen a 2.4% increase in road traffic from 2009 to 2017. Increased traffic volumes have also coincided with a steady increase in cycling across the borough, up by 43% between 2009 and 2017.

Previous content

What are we doing? Wirral response to Travel and Transport needs (Update - May 2016)
This summary report provides an overview of local approaches to transport issues.

This is a mapping tool that provides an overview of traffic related casualties for UK using nationally available data. CrashMap is designed to be an extremely easy to use tool that will allow you to find out information about road traffic crashes on Britain’s roads. This is based on official Government data that has processed to make it much more accessible to members of the public.

Wirral-specific Household Travel Survey (published 2018)
Mott MacDonald was commissioned by Merseytravel to undertake the Liverpool City Region (LCR) Household Travel Survey (formerly Countywide Travel Survey or CWS) in 2017. This report presents the district level 2017 results for Wirral. To be able to use the Household Travel Survey dataset at district level, at least 400 households were interviewed in each district. The total number of households successfully interviewed across Wirral District was 419. The data produced from the survey provides a snapshot of the current travel patterns of the Liverpool City Region’s (LCR) inhabitants. 

A survey of Public Perspectives on Highways and Transportation Services (2018)
The NHT Public Satisfaction Survey collects public perspectives on, and satisfaction with, Highway and Transport Services in Local Authority areas. It is a unique, standardised, collaboration between Highway Authorities across the UK enabling comparison, knowledge sharing, and the potential to improve efficiencies by the sharing of good practice. The NHT Survey is also referenced in the DfT's Incentive Fund Self-assessment process.

It gives participating Authorities:

  • A better understanding of how they are performing in the eyes of their public

  • A consistent datum for setting service levels and a means of measuring the impact of service improvements

  • Access to the best performers and the opportunity to learn from the good practice of others

  • Full transparency of data for benchmarking purposes 

Relevant documents:

Further resources

Their are many cross-cutting and complex relationships between transport and health. Transport Policy is at the heart of a number of key themes, directly impacting upon the health of Wirral residents and is an important contributory factor to health inequalities when transport needs are not met.

Not only is an effective transport system key to enable access to employment, education, health services and leisure and recreational activities, it also influences the local climate, economy and social equity across the Borough, all of which, in turn, can impact on the health of Wirral residents.

Making provision for encouraging active and sustainable modes of transport are also key in directly improving the health and wellbeing of the local community. Transport can therefore influence health outcomes in a number of ways, both positively and negatively. We will be developing our available content around the following key issues:

Health promoting:

  • Enabling access to employment, shops, recreation, social support networks, health services and countryside
  • Recreation
  • Exercise
  • Economic Development

Health damaging:

  • Road Traffic Injuries
  • Pollution
  • Noise
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Danger
  • Loss of land and planning blight
  • Communities divided by road and other transport
  • Constraints on mobility access and independence
  • Reduced social use of outdoor space due to traffic

Regional Content

Liverpool City Region Household Travel Survey (published 2018)
The Liverpool City Region (Countywide) Household Travel Survey has been conducted in varying forms since 1978 at regular intervals. The latest iteration of the survey (now the LCR Household Travel Survey) was undertaken between April and October of 2017. The survey adopted a broadly similar methodological approach as the previous survey in 2013. Data has been collected from a random sample of around 400 households within each of the six local authority districts – Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St. Helens and Wirral. The data produced from the Countywide Household Travel Survey (CWS) provides a snapshot of the current travel patterns of the Liverpool City Region’s inhabitants.

Active travel: a briefing for local authorities (May 2016)
This guide suggests a range of practical action for local authorities, from overall policy to practical implementation. It highlights the importance of community involvement and sets out steps for transport and public health practitioners. View the guide.

Child Road Safety in Great Britain 2010-2014 (RAC Foundation) (April 2016)

  • This report looks at child road casualties in Great Britain for the five years between 2010 and 2014. It looks at how children travel, the geographical distribution of child casualties and how the time of day, a child’s age, gender, travel mode and the socio-demographic background of the community impact on child road casualties.

  • The statistics for annual child casualties per 10,000 resident children by local authority placed Wirral as 135th worst performing out of 378 local authority areas of Great Britain at 16.15 average child casualties (aged 0-15) per 10,000 resident children close to Great Britain average of 15.31 with the lowest being Shetland Islands at 4.54 per 10,000 and highest as Blackpool at 30.84 per 10,000 resident children.

  • When considering the annual child killed and seriously Injured (KSI) casualties per 10,000 resident children, for the period 2010-2014, and ranked by Local Authority Wirral was placed 40th worst performing out of 378 local authority areas in Great Britain with an annual average for child KSI casualties (aged 0-15) of 2.89 per 10,000 resident children, a total of 86 killed or seriously injured (KSI) casualties in that 5 year period or an average 17.2 child KSI casualties per year. 

Executive Report can be accessed here - Factsheet here - Local Authority Tables here

Trauma and Injury Intelligence Group - Biannual Bulletin (July 2015)
This bulletin provides an overview of local performance in relation to access at Arrowe Park Hospital Emergency Department - April 2014 to March 2015.

Transport & Health
This Briefing Statement by the Faculty of Public Health highlights some of the key issues that transport plans and planners are looking to address locally and nationally.

Healthy transport = Healthy lives (BMA, 2012)
People have always wanted to reach destinations quickly, safely and efficiently. But as the UK transport environment has become increasingly complex, transport's impact on health has become unnecessarily harmful - to the point where it is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality. The British Medical Association report aims to show the positive effect that integrating health into transport policy will have and we propose areas for action that prioritise health for all relevant transport sectors.

Transport and Health Resource: Delivering Healthy Local Transport Plans (Department of Health, 2011) 
The Transport and Health resource was jointly commissioned by the Department of Health (DH) and Department for Transport (DfT) to support the development and delivery of health conscious Local Transport Plans throughout England.

Transport Plan for Growth (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority)
With the creation of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority there was a need to bring together the existing Merseyside and Halton Local Transport Plans. A Transport Plan for Growth (NO LONGER AVAILABLE) sets out the City Region's strategic vision and delivery plan for transport and also looks to foster greater collaborative working across the Combined Authority. Access the plan (NO LONGER AVAILABLE).

How we travel (February 2015)
This latest instalment in the Office for National Statistics UK Perspectives series presents some key statistics relating to how passenger transport has changed over time in Great Britain. Access the webpage.

The Department for Transport (DfT) has published a series of reports which set out the latest cost-benefit evidence from studies in investment in walking and cycling.

  • Claiming the Health Dividend examines information on health benefits alongside other benefits such as savings in travel time, congestion and accidents. The typical benefit-cost ratios identified are considerably greater than the threshold of 4:1 which is considered by the DfT as ‘very high’ value for money. Access the report.

  • Value for Money Assessment for the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LTSF)

  • Value for Money Assessment for Cycling Grants