Village cycle path plans

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CYCLISTS could soon feel safer taking to the saddle after parish councillors agreed to progress plans for a cycle path network.

Pinchbeck Parish Council will be the driving force behind a project to encourage Lincolnshire County Council Highways department to introduce safer routes for people on bikes after an 83-year-old cyclist died in Pennytoft Lane in June.

It will work closely with cycle pressure group Pedals in a bid to secure new bike racks at six locations around the village, including outside the shops and at the village hall, as well as new dedicated cyclepaths alongside many village roads, including Market Way, Pennytoft Lane, Cherryholt Lane, Rose Lane and Fennel Road, leading to Pinchbeck East Primary School.

The plans would also see the footpath alongside the school leading to Knight Street changed to allow bikes, and a cyclepath on Knight Street through the centre of the village.

Footpaths in Church Walk and Gallery Walk would also be changed to include a cycle path.

Parish council chairman Andrew Bowser said: “This is a cause close to my heart. It might take a while to achieve but we want to make it a reality to improve safety for everyone in Pinchbeck.

“It is unbelieveable that in 2012 with Bradley Wiggins and Chris Hoy winning Olympic gold medals, we as a village have no cycle paths.”

The cycle strategy also calls for traffic calming measures in three “accident blackspots” in the village, including Pennytoft Lane where cyclist Alexander Martin died and Knight Street, where children cross to get to the nearby school and is often used by HGVs.

Market Way, which currently doesn’t have a footpath for pedstrians, is also on the list of the council’s “blackspots” because figures suggest half of cars exceed the speed limit on that stretch, putting lives at risk.

It is hoped plans in the pipeline will see a grass verge cut to allow pedestrians to walk beside the road safely.

The council is now interested in hearing villagers’ views on the plans.