Car brand Ford sponsors RideLondon as part of initiative to reduce use of cars

Ford has teamed up with RideLondon as part of its 'park the car' initiative, targetting reduction of short journeys

RideLondon The Mall
(Image credit: Alamy)

Ford has become the presenting sponsor of the RideLondon festival of cycling, citing a desire to amplify its 'Park the Car' initiative as a driving factor behind the decision.

The annual festival of cycling takes place between May 27 and May 29, and includes a three-stage pro women's race, as well as three mass participation sportives -  the RideLondon-Essex 100, 60 and 30 - and a 'FreeCycle' event which allows the public to enjoy roads free of cars. 

Ford's 'Park the Car' campaign is geared towards encouraging the public to swap short journeys in the car for alternative methods of transport - such as cycling and walking. 

The brand is aiming to encourage 1 million 'journey swaps' across Europe in its first year running the campaign, having identified via a study that one-third of Europeans would be willing to drive less in order to combat climate change.

Ford plans to partner with organisations that support active travel, to address the 50% of car journeys which the World Health Organisation says are under 5 kilometres (3.2 miles). 

The UK's most popular car brand will support the FreeCycle's 'Led Ride' scheme, with rides coming from all 32 of London's boroughs, giving people the opportunity to test out a cycle in the city.  

Ford will also sponsor the Queen of the Mountains competition for riders in the women's Classique stage race, taking place between May 27 and 29.

A Ford Kuga PHEV will feature within the race convoy, whilst a Ford Mustang Mach-E will be the Official Electric Vehicle as part of the 2022 support fleet.

As its name suggests, the mass participation ride for 2022 will visit Essex.

"The message [of our Park the Car campaign] is simple - if your journey is under three miles, consider walking or cycling when you can,” explained Head of Customer Communications at Ford Britain, Claire Killwick. 

"Ford is committed to achieving zero emissions in vehicles sales and carbon neutrality across its European facilities, logistics and suppliers by 2035," she added. 

Event director at London Marathon events, which organisers RideLondon, Hugh Brasher added "We look forward to working with the Ford team to amplify their work in promoting active travel through their association with RideLondon and the innovative 'Park the Car’ campaign which encourages car users to cycle or walk rather than drive short journeys.” 

The events are held on traffic-free roads in central London, east London and Essex and people are being reminded to plan ahead for any travel plans on Sunday 29 May.

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