Children?s cycling training is to undergo its biggest change in decades, according to Transport minister Tom Harris.

The Bikeability scheme replaces the old cycling proficiency tests and is designed to provide children with the on-road skills they need to handle today?s road conditions. The scheme, which has been piloted in seven areas since last September, is now being rolled across all areas in a bid to encourage more children to cycle.

Harris said: ?Bikeability is a great way to get our children cycling safely from an early age. We want our children to be safer, more confident cyclists and to encourage healthier greener transport options. The pilots for Bikeability have been a runaway success and I am confident the national rollout will see big increase in the number of people rediscovering the joys of travelling on two wheels.?

Over the past six months more than 80 per cent of training organisers and instructors said they saw an increase in the number of children cycling to school after participating in the scheme.

Philip Darnton, Chairman of Cycling England, said: ? We recognise that cycling on the roads is every parent?s concern but the first step in creating safer cycling must be to ensure every child gets the proper training ? that?s Bikeability.?

Any schools who are interested in setting up Bikeability training can get more information online at www.bikeability.org.uk