T&A investigates Walking and Cycling Routes
Have your say on the proposed routes in West Norfolk
We at T&A magazine have had a varied and interesting relationship with leisure cycling and walking routes for many years. Holidaying abroad walking and cycling has shown us what can be done, as opposed to what can be avoided, by authorities of all nationalities.
In Italy we enjoyed the leisure and tourism of the holiday resort of Riccione which attracts cyclists from across Europe to spend their money on tours with ex-pro riders on roads virtually closed to motorised transport.
On the island of Majorca, the north-east corner is almost exclusively motor transport free with great rides in the sunshine in virtual total safety. Going to Utrecht in Holland the city centre has been converted to a motorised traffic free environment, with bicycles having the right of way throughout This city was a regular traffic area until they changed the way they wanted to live back in the 60’s and 70’s . We have toured and observed.
Around our own country we have seen the railways that Beaching closed during the 60’s converted to walking and cycling routes. Most counties have done their best to produce safe routes where families including young children can safely expand their skills without the risk of collision with motorised transport, there are occasional spats between riders and walkers but nobody ever dies. The writer was a Norfolk County Councillor for 4 years and sat on the panel for safe riding and walking, unfortunately it was in the period of austerity where money was so tight and although plans were made not much actual work took place. Those works that did happen were, in the main, in the east of the county and a lot had the dubious value of being just signposts or paint on the road and then being called routes. This latest initiative could be better and has the signs of being a good joined up effort.
Firstly let’s look at the ground rules, are these routes for commuting to work, shopping and so forth, or are they for Tourism? Although some could be used for both, they are totally different in their usage. Commuters want the shortest possible time and distance, while tourists would want to take in places of interest and the most picturesque surroundings.
The Elizabeth Way
So NCC wants your views on the routes listed on their website: www.norfolk.gov.uk/activetrave... Many have been started, and from what I have seen what is being done is of a good standard. The challenge is to make them joined up in a logical fashion. We at T&A want to stay positive and ask you to do the same - negativity will not get money spent in West Norfolk .
Norfolk County Council has launched phase 2 of the Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP), which focuses on improving active travel in 20 towns across the county.
The purpose of the LCWIP is to enable increased levels of cycling, walking, and wheeling across the county, helping to create a modern, well-connected transport network that gives people more alternatives to travelling by car.
An online survey was launched on (Thursday 18 May), and will be open for eight weeks asking for residents’ feedback on the suggested proposals outlined in the plan.
The online surveys will be available for each of the 20 locations outlined in the plan, as well as for improvements to the Norfolk Trails and the National Cycle Network. There will be a final showcasing of the schemes at the Royal Norfolk Show – 28 and 29 June. We attended the consultation exhibition at the Oasis Hunstanton meeting and photographed the two officers there.
The online surveys will be live until Thursday 13 July.