Loughborough & District
Cycle Users' Campaign

County Council admit lack of “holistic approach”

At a meeting of Leicestershire County Council’s Cabinet on 20 July 2021, the Director of Environment and Transport submitted a Cycling and Walking Strategy report that included the following:

“To date the Authority has focused efforts on supporting the growth agenda in support of Government policy and funding (bidding) criteria/objectives. This has meant, in reality, investment in cycling and walking infrastructure has had to take lesser priority than road-building schemes aimed at reducing congestion and improving motor vehicle journey times (albeit those schemes normally do include pedestrian and cycle enhancements). This,combined with limited dedicated Government funding for cycling and walking schemes,has historically and inevitably resulted in a slower, less holistic, approach to delivering cohesive cycling and walking networks.”

This will come as no surprise to those of us who have been campaigning for the promotion of active travel for decades. Let us hope that this report heralds a true change in attitudes and priorities. We have heard the Council set out many fine ambitions over the years, but none have been anywhere near achieved.

Bike Repair Station in Quorn

The Coop in Quorn has installed a bike repair station outside the front of the store for use by any cyclist. It contains a selection of tools to enable small roadside repairs and adjustments. It includes a pump, tyre levers and various sizes of allen key, screwdriver heads and spanners

The store itself also has a useful selection of bike accessories for sale.

A similar repair station is to be found at Loughborough station. The availability of a good pump is to welcomed in particular, as many cycles have under-inflated tyres.

Quorn to Old Woodhouse Bridleway

by Neil Parr

Quorn Parish Council is investigating the potential to refurbish the Quorn to Old Woodhouse bridleway. Its objective is to offer an alternative route for walkers and cyclists avoiding the busy and difficult section of B591, Woodhouse road. The 2019 Neighbourhood Plan identified considerable local interest in improving the walking and cycling routes in the Parish.

The bridleway runs from Buddon Lane in Quorn to Vicary Lane in Old Woodhouse. It is mostly tarmacked apart from a 600 metre middle section which has a very poor surface and is liable to waterlogging. This section is currently only suitable for determined mountain bikers and enthusiastic walkers and it is often impassable during wetter periods.

We have engaged with Leicestershire County Council, who are responsible for the upkeep of the path, and we are now contacting landowners along the affected section of the route.

This will not be an easy project to deliver. Local government budgets are stretched and we may end up having to deliver it in sections at different times due to the complexity of land ownership.

Longer term, if we can make this happen, we may be able to create a model that can be used for other bridleways in Charnwood Forest. In total, there are about 15 miles of bridleways in the locality in need of refurbishing and upgrading. Together these could create a fantastic alternative travel network and encourage greater cycling interconnectivity between communities and local attractions.

If you are interested in becoming involved in the project please contact me at publicity@ldcuc.org.uk .

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