Main data sources

  • Regional Transport Statistics: 2002 (Espineira & Haslam, 2002)
  • National Travel Survey (Salathiel, D. 2003)

both for Department for Transport.

Data availability and quality

Regional Transport Statistics (Espineira, J. & Haslam, M. 2002) reported average distance travelled, in miles, per person, by mode, in the South West. The modes included walking, cycling, driving (car & passenger), other private modes and local bus. It did not cover rail, taxi/minicab or other public modes such as water transport and air travel. However figures for these three modes did exist but had been omitted from the final report for statistical reasons. As this was the only data available on rail and taxi travel for the South West, it was used. In this report, air and water transport were combined, but for the present study it was necessary to separate them.

Through personal contacts, further detailed information on water transport for the South West was obtained from the Department for Transport (Pathan, 2004). Further air travel data was obtained from Transport Trends: 2002 (DfT 2002a), and used to calculate the average distance travelled by UK residents abroad.

Calculations and proxy measures used

Regional Transport Statistics (Espineira & Haslam, 2002) figures were converted to kilometres.

Data on all ferry routes from South West ports to other UK and international ports was available. DfT (Pathan, 2004) provided information on the distance between ports, the number of journeys and the number of passengers travelling on these journeys. It was therefore possible to calculate total waterborne passenger kilometres for the South West.

Regional Transport Statistics (Espineira & Haslam, 2002) reported only UK internal air travel. DfT's (2002) Transport Statistics Great Britain published information on total international air miles travelled out of the UK as well as the total number of passengers. A total UK air travel figure was derived from these two sources.

ONS (2002a) overseas travel and tourism report states that only around 62% of all UK air travel is done by UK residents, so this factor was applied to the total UK air travel to derive a figure for air travel by UK residents, and this was scaled down to South West level based on population.

Data recommendations

  • Most air travel data looks at passenger numbers and flight numbers. It would be more appropriate if data was reported as distances travelled.