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Call for more to be done to segregate pedestrians and cyclists on Norwich routes

PUBLISHED: 08:46 30 November 2018 | UPDATED: 12:01 30 November 2018

The Bluebell Road shared cycle and pedestrian path. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The Bluebell Road shared cycle and pedestrian path. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2017

A call has been made for more to be done to segregate cyclists and pedestrians on some of the shared routes in Norwich - but council bosses say national policy means it is not always possible.

Caroline Ackroyd, Liberal Democrat city councillor for Eaton. Pic: James Wright.Caroline Ackroyd, Liberal Democrat city councillor for Eaton. Pic: James Wright.

There have been major changes to cycle routes and pathways across Norwich in recent years, but not all of the shared ones are demarcated with lines.

Caroline Ackroyd, Liberal Democrat councillor for Eaton, raised the issue at a meeting of Norwich City Council, because of concerns over safety on the shared footway/cycleway along Bluebell Road.

She said: “Cycling is both a means of fitness and a way of reducing our carbon footprint and the implementation of the pedalways across the city is therefore welcome. But walking is equally important.

“Currently, on some stretches of the pedalway, shared use is in place - acceptable for cyclists and pedestrians to mix, but with apparently insufficient width to allow for clear demarcation between them.

John Fisher (left) and Mike Stonard (right), chair and vice chair of Norwich Highways Agency Committee, with the Share and Care signs put up in Norwich city centre. Pic: Norfolk County Council.John Fisher (left) and Mike Stonard (right), chair and vice chair of Norwich Highways Agency Committee, with the Share and Care signs put up in Norwich city centre. Pic: Norfolk County Council.

“This leaves many pedestrians feeling nervous about cyclists who suddenly head towards them or appear behind them with no warning.”

Mrs Ackroyd called on the council to seek a change in the rules, so there could be white lines painted or clearer signs.

Mike Stonard, Labour’s cabinet member for sustainable and inclusive growth, said the council always looked to provide separated facilities for cyclists and pedestrians where possible.

But he said: “However, this is not always possible and sometimes we have to provide shared use footpath cycleways. This can either be segregated or unsegregated.

“In order for a path to be segregated it needs to have a minimum width of four metres, this is national policy and we have no scope to change that.”

He said ‘share with care’ signs, which had been introduced in Norwich city centre following changes to allow cyclists to use those streets, could be used further afield.

Mr Stonard said: “Officers advise me that it would be possible to provide similar temporary signs at other locations across the city where there are shared use footpath cycleways.

“They are currently making arrangements to provide such signing on the Bluebell Road facility.”

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