The Royal Opera House has joined two major London theatres to support TfL’s Cycle Superhighway plans. The Globe and the Young Vic have also sent letters of support. The Royal Opera House has been holding performances in Covent Garden since the first building was built there in 1732. Each year, 700,000 people visit the opera house.
Alex Beard CBE, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, released this statement:
As the Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, I am proud of our role in the cultural ecology of London and its creative economy. More than 700,000 visits are made by audience members each year to performances at the Royal Opera House and we play an important role as a major attraction in the Covent Garden area, which is visited by more than 40 million people each year.
Like many organisations in London, a growing number of our 1,000 employees cycle to work. I am sure that an even larger proportion of our team would cycle if they felt comfortable and safe on the roads. It is also clear that cycling is used by an increasing number of visitors to the Covent Garden area and indeed our audience members.
We value employee satisfaction, health, and freedom and that’s why we endorse the plans outlined by TfL to create new segregated routes through the heart of the city. The proposed north–south and east–west routes will help us attract and retain the employees our business needs to continue to thrive. They will make London a more attractive city in which we can build and run our operations.
‘Crossrail for Bikes’ is, on balance good for our operation and for London’s creative economy. And it will save lives. Please make sure these plans are delivered without delay.