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More people in the Western Isles are to be encouraged to walk, wheel and cycle as a new project led by Cycling UK gets under way.

The rural connections project is aimed at getting people more active, with the Western Isles one of the regions targeted as remote and rural, alongside Orkney, Shetland, Caithness and others.

Research has shown that people in the Western Isles are more likely to use their car for short journeys than the Scottish average – 63% of islanders use their cars for journeys under two miles, compared with the Scottish average of 51%.

Now funding from Smarter Choices Smarter Places is to be used to build on Cycling UK’s current community work, which includes initiatives like the Scotland cycle repair scheme.

The idea is encourage more people to get active by choosing walking or cycling for short journeys to the shops, visiting friends or attending appointments.

The new project worker is Daryll Brown, who can’t wait to get started on his role in the Western Isles.

Daryll said: “I’m looking forward to travelling around island communities to promote walking, wheeling and cycling opportunities.

“I will be delivering events on each island, offering free bike checks, bike loans and guided rides among other things. I am keen to support the existing e–bike loan schemes and help to promote creating community walking and cycling hubs.”

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Picture – Cycling UK