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Pedal power

Travelling sustainably

At the heart of BU’s travel plan is the sustainable travel hierarchy which sets out the hierarchy of travel options in relation to how sustainable they are.

It identifies that active travel options including walking and cycling are the most preferable options in the hierarchy, followed by use of public transport and lift-sharing with single occupancy car use at the bottom. BU shapes its travel plan with this in mind and encourages all students and staff to move up the hierarchy to a more sustainable mode of transport wherever possible.

Active travel

Active travel including walking and cycling are the most sustainable options but most importantly they can be great fun.

BU has a Bicycle User Group and Walking User Group which students and staff are encouraged to get involved with. Members of these groups can benefit from access to discounts at local participating retailers through their free Dorset Cyclists' Network membership, while lights and locks are available to buy through SUBU. BU has also supported the groups by giving out high visibility equipment, lights, walking poles and pedometers. The groups also play an important role in lobbying the university and council to improve facilities for active travel users both on campus and around Bournemouth. BU has also supported the setting up of a staff-led active walking group, providing Nordic walking poles, pedometers and high visibility umbrellas. 

If you want to cycle at university but don’t have a bike, the BU Bike Scheme allows you to hire a bike for a term or the whole academic year. By subscribing to BU by Bike you get access to a bike, free regular bike checks, and support and advice from local bike charity Hope2Cycle.

Public transport

BU has great public transport links by bus and rail.

The university runs its own UNIBUS service. Details about routes, timetables and fares can be found on the UNIBUS web page. Other bus services include More Bus and the Yellow Buses.

Furthermore, BU’s Lansdowne campus is a five-minute walk from Bournemouth train station and can be reached by the UNIBUS service from Talbot campus.

Lift sharing

BU encourages staff and students to lift share where possible. Staff members are encouraged to join the online BU Liftshare matching service.

How to get involved

Take a look at the local cycle routes (pdf 9mb) and find out more about our bike doctor service.

Join the BU Cycling User Group or Walking User Group.

Have a ride on a Unibus.

Become a lift sharer.

How does this help BU?

BU’s travel plan (pdf 1.25mb) has a campus site target to reduce staff and students’ single-car occupancy when travelling to the university. Most of our students already travel by sustainable means, reducing congestion, pollution and carbon emissions.

More about our sustainable travel plan

With around 19,000 students and 1,500 staff, we realise that the way we all get to the university in the morning can have a huge impact on the local environment and road network. That’s why we promote sustainable transport practices, and encourage people to walk, cycle, use public transport, car share or find other alternatives.

Our Travel Plan is a key part of how we do this. It helps us to manage our car parking spaces better, reduce single car occupancy and encourage people to find more sustainable methods of transport.

We first introduced the Travel Plan in 2003, reviewed it in 2008, 2013 and again in 2018. We’re now planning how we are going to minimise the impact our staff and students have on travel in the region up until 2025, building on the fantastic progress we have already made, and adding new measures as well. View the full BU Travel Plan 2019-2025 (pdf 5mb).