Campaigners in Saffron Walden call on authorities to climb aboard cycle revolution

Access Walden chairwoman Jan Durkin holding a copy of the report, with fellow campaign group members

Access Walden chairwoman Jan Durkin holding a copy of the report, with fellow campaign group members James Savage, Tim Furlong and Ian Willard. - Credit: Archant

CAMPAIGNERS bidding for a safe cycle route between Saffron Walden and Audley End station have backed a report which urges Government and local authorities to ‘Get Britain Cycling’.

The report, issued last week by a cross-party parliamentary inquiry, makes 18 bold recommendations which call on the Government to make Britain’s streets safer and more inviting for cyclists.

Now campaign group Access Walden, who made a written submission to the inquiry, is urging Uttlesford District Council and Essex Country Council to adopt and implement the recommendations locally.

Access Walden chairwoman Jan Durkin said: “One of the report’s main recommendations is that local authorities should seek to deliver cycle-friendly improvements across their existing roads, including small improvements, segregated routes and road reallocation.

“This is as an endorsement of the process being led by Access Walden, ECC and UDC to design and implement a safe cycle route between Saffron Walden and Audley End station.”


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She added: “We have written to all candidates in the local elections asking them to pledge to create safer cycling and specifically commit to building a cycle/footpath along Wenden Road by 2014. We trust local politicians will note the report’s cross-party support, and play their part in making its recommendations a reality here.”

David Cameron has commended the report. Speaking in parliament, the Prime Minister said that Government “should be doing much more in our country to encourage cycling”. He praised the way mayor Boris Johnson had promoted cycling in London and urged town halls to play their part in making roads safer and more attractive to cyclists, adding: “I hope local authorities can follow his lead and do more.”

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The report’s recommendations are also fully supported by the CBI and leading motorist association the AA whose president Edmund King said leadership was needed to match the vision.

Leading figures in the sports and business worlds have also thrown their weight behind the report, acknowledging the contribution cycling makes to health, education, sport and business.

Cycling’s visibility in the area continues to grow with the announcement that the 2014 Tour de France will come through Uttlesford and with Sustrans having sign-posted the route from Saffron Walden Market Square, along Wenden Road to link up with the National Cycle Network (Route 11).

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