Worcester: Council drops £10,000 on obstacle-strewn bike lane

The cycle path has numerous obstacles, including a dustbin (Image: SWNS)

The bike path features numerous obstacles for cyclists to avoid, including a garbage can (Image: SWNS)

Council leaders are being criticized for ‘wasting’ more than £10,000 of taxpayers’ money on a cycle lane teeming with dangers.

Worcester’s cycle route was slammed by cyclists forced to zigzag around the obstacles and branded an ’embarrassment’ and a ‘mess’.

Riders must dodge a lamppost, tree, trash cans and speed camera located in the middle of the bike path next to a busy main road.

It has now emerged that Worcestershire City Council paid £9,195 for the cycle path, which runs alongside Worcester Cricket Club along the New Road from the city center to St John’s, and spent £5,000 on painting white lines and installing bollards Has.

A further £3,000 was used to close part of the New Road for three days while the cycle lane was installed in June this year.

Dan Brothwell, chairman of the Bike Worcester cycling campaign group, described the track as “embarrassing”.

“I don’t know whether to laugh or cry,” he said.

“The coup de grace is the effort expended to paint a solid white line around the speed camera.

FILE PICTURE - The new cycle path along Worcester's New Road from the city center to St John's next to the Worcestershire Cricket Ground has various obstacles including a speed camera, rubbish bins and trees in the way of the route. Council chiefs were charged with ?waste? more than 10,000 euros in taxpayer money on a 150 m long bike path that is riddled with obstacles. See SWNS story SWLScycle. Cycle route in Worcester has been blown up by cyclists forced to zigzag around numerous hazards. Riders must navigate a lamppost, tree, trash cans and speed camera right through the middle of the bike path next to a busy main road. It has now emerged that Worcestershire County Council spent £9,195 on the lane, including £5,000 to paint white lines and install bollards. Another ?3,000 taxpayers? Money was spent to close part of the New Road for three days while the cycle lane was installed in June this year. Bike campaign group chairman Dan Brothwell called the project

Dangers on the bike path include a speed camera (Image: SWNS)

“If the aim is to put Worcester on the map for comically good reasons, the Council is on the right track.

“Instead of providing an infrastructure that offers an improvement for people walking and cycling, we are faced with this mess.

“This does nothing to improve the connectivity or continuity of the already shared path on New Road.

“The time, effort and money expended on this is a complete waste and could have had a far more positive impact elsewhere in the city.”

And one cyclist, Jon Marshall, said he nearly fell twice while riding on the bike lane.

The 23-year-old said: “I really can’t believe the Council wasted ten grand on something worse than the road.

“I nearly fell onto the road trying to drive around a trash can only to see a tree in front of me.

“Another time I had to go around the speed camera but almost hit another oncoming cyclist.”

FILE PICTURE - The new cycle path along Worcester's New Road from the city center to St John's next to the Worcestershire Cricket Ground has various obstacles including a speed camera, rubbish bins and trees in the way of the route. Council chiefs were charged with ?waste? more than 10,000 euros in taxpayer money on a 150 m long bike path that is riddled with obstacles. See SWNS story SWLScycle. Cycle route in Worcester has been blown up by cyclists forced to zigzag around numerous hazards. Riders must navigate a lamppost, tree, trash cans and speed camera right through the middle of the bike path next to a busy main road. It has now emerged that Worcestershire County Council spent £9,195 on the lane, including £5,000 to paint white lines and install bollards. Another ?3,000 taxpayers? Money was spent to close part of the New Road for three days while the cycle lane was installed in June this year. Bike campaign group chairman Dan Brothwell called the project

The cycle path was branded ’embarrassing’ (Image: SWNS)

Another cyclist, Janine Fowles, 58, also shared her surprise at the number of objects blocking the route.

The council acknowledged that they had received a number of complaints about the New Road cycle path but claimed it had been a success.

Councilor Mike Rouse, Cabinet Member for Motorways and Transport, said: “Cycling infrastructure of any kind, which has to follow strict government guidelines, is expensive and that’s one of the reasons we can’t install as much as we would like the Council to do.

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“Since the system was installed, monitoring has shown that the system has been successful and that there is now very little conflict as most pedestrians and cyclists use the separate lanes, which is really good news for both.”

The under-fire council launched the scheme after receiving the worst possible zero rating from Active Travel England – the new government agency responsible for handling cash for walking and cycling initiatives.

Elsewhere, a pensioner in Middlesbrough suffered a broken wrist and two black eyes after tripping over a “dangerous” cycle lane marker intended to protect cyclists by creating a buffer between them and motorists.

And Brummies was amazed by what has been branded as the “world’s shortest bike path” – it’s only 8ft.

https://metro.co.uk/2022/11/21/worcester-council-blows-10000-on-cycle-lane-littered-with-obstacles-17801187/ Worcester: Council drops £10,000 on obstacle-strewn bike lane

Justin Scacco

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