Have your say on new cycle routes in Rossendale
Lancashire County Council is asking people what they would like to see from new cycle routes being developed in Rossendale.
The routes will be part of the wider East Lancashire Strategic Cycleway Network, which aims to make it easier for people to access opportunities by improving links to workplaces, schools, shops and services.
Two of the main routes connect Accrington to Stubbins, and Rawtenstall to Whitworth, mostly following disused railway lines to create safe and attractive off-road paths.
A consultation begins today (Monday 9 May) to find out more about how people currently use these paths, and what they would like to see from improvements to the surface, as well as proposed features such as signage, seating, artwork and play facilities.
People are being asked to complete a short questionnaire which will be received by 10,500 households near the routes, as well as being available online. Two drop-in sessions are also being held for those who would like to find out more.
County Councillor John Fillis, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "Improving these routes will make them more appealing for people to use for regular journeys to work and education, as well as for a leisurely walk, run, bike ride or horse ride.
"We want to make sure they can be enjoyed by everyone, and are asking people to take a few minutes to complete a straightforward questionnaire to help us achieve this.
"There are some practical issues over what type of surface we use in places. For most of it we're proposing two surfaces, with tarmac suitable for cyclists, wheelchairs and pushchairs, and grass or stone for horse riders. However, we can only use one type of surface on some narrow sections, and we would like people's feedback on this.
"Mid Pennine Arts is leading a programme to get people involved in developing features such as signs, resting places, information boards, havens for wildlife, and natural play areas, and we'd like people to register their interest if they want to be part of this.
"We're also holding some drop-in sessions for anyone who wants to discuss the plans with the officers who are developing the scheme."
The drop-in events are being held at Helmshore Textile Musem on Monday 23 May from 2.30pm to 7pm, and in the Council Chamber at Rossendale Borough Council Offices at Futures Park, Bacup, on Friday 27 May from 2.30pm to 7pm.
The consultation takes place from Monday 9 May to Monday 13 June. You can complete the questionnaire online at www.lancashire.gov.uk/haveyoursay.
Improvements will be made to four cycle links in Hyndburn, Rossendale and Blackburn to form the East Lancashire Strategic Cycleway Network. It is being jointly funded by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Lancashire County Council and Blackburn with Darwen Council with support from Rossendale and Hyndburn Councils. It follows a successful bid by the LEP to secure Growth Deal funding from government to deliver transport improvements which will support future economic growth.
You can find our more about the East Lancashire Strategic Cycleway Network at http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/council/strategies-policies-plans/roads-parking-and-travel/major-transport-schemes/east-lancashire-strategic-cycleway-network.aspx