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Burges Salmon LLP

Burges Salmon decided to investigate how staff commuted to and from work with an aim of finding ways to promote greener travel solutions.

Why we did it: 

Burges Salmon recently moved to a new office premises and this presented the firm with the opportunity to make improvements to all its facilities including those offered to those who commuted using sustainable means. The intention was to encourage those people who still used cars, and the larger numbers of people who used buses and trains to start using more environmentally friendly forms for transport.

What we did: 

Prior to the move it was important to establish what modes of transport our staff would use and the firm therefore commissioned an additional travel survey to its regular annual one.
The findings of this survey are summarised below.

(a) The survey indicated that just over 13% of staff cycled in on a daily basis.

(b) Walking was a common mode of transport with 24% of staff walking or running in on a daily basis and a further 11% walking occasionally.

(c) Of the remaining staff 27% used cars, 2% motorbikes, 3% car share, 14% used train, 4% used park and ride and 13% bus.

The firm was aware that it may be difficult to reduce the amount of staff using cars as in rural locations public transport can be limited, if it exists at all, and therefore aimed to concentrate its initial efforts on cyclists.
To implement this we installed 70 Sheffield Stands in the secure basement, this could accommodate up to 140 bicycles. Space was also set aside for an extra 30 stands providing an extra 60 spaces if required in the future.

Central shower and changing facilities were provided, totalling twelve cubicles including those equipped for disabled users. A further six cubicles were provided throughout the building. Two drying rooms were provided for hanging up wet clothes and a total of 136 lockers provided for staff use, a percentage of these were set aside as day lockers for occasional users.

To promote cycling the firm publicised its active Bike Users Group which meets regularly and has in the region of 70 members. Sessions mainly focus on bike maintenance and route planning. A Bike Buddy Scheme was implemented for anyone new to cycling or just wanting a refresher to cycling, the firm also provided information/leaflets on cycle routes on our travel notice board.

Burges Salmon stores a bike repair kit in the basement containing various items such as pumps, tools and puncture repair kits. The firm also holds sessions with "Doctor Bike", an external service, who undertakes repairs and safety checks on site, the 3 hour sessions cost £165 and allow enough time for 12 appointments. The firm offers the Cyclescheme, which provides tax-free bikes and associated equipment and the firm has become a member of the Cycle Champions Network.

What we learnt: 

Following a bedding in period the travel survey was repeated and it was found that there had been an increase in those cycling to work of around 30%. This meant that on a good day up to 113 staff cycled to work, or around 19% of the total workforce.

Results: 

As a direct result of this, in March 2011 Burges Salmon was awarded the "Biggest Increase In Cycling Award (Large Business)" by the Better by Bike Business Award Scheme.