£ 12.8million in funding to improve cycle routes between Stroud and Gloucestershire


City leaders are delighted that Gloucestershire has received £ 12.8million from the government to improve cycle paths.

The full £ 12.822million offer to the Leveling Up fund has been awarded to support significant transport improvements in the city of Gloucester, connecting what has been known as ‘the missing link in cycle paths’ with the heart of the county.

Gloucestershire County Council Executives say the funding will bring to life the vision of connecting the recently improved Gloucester towpath and Sharpness Canal with the A40 West Cheltenham transport improvement program, via Gloucester and the B4063 cycle path.

This would ultimately provide a 26 mile cycling “backbone” through Stroud County to Bishops Cleeve, allowing County Council to create a substantial local cycling and walking network, helping people get around in a meaningful way. sustainable in residential areas.

Council Chief Mark Hawthorne (Con, Quedgeley) said: “I am absolutely delighted with the news that Gloucestershire will receive a significant boost for sustainable transport.

“Our long-term goals for tackling climate change and reducing carbon emissions must include sustainable modes of travel, and I believe building a substantial and safe network for cyclists and pedestrians will transform our county.

“This funding allows us to fully fund these ambitions for the future of Gloucestershire.

Liberal Democrat group leader Paul Hodgkinson (Bourton-on-the-Water and Northleach) said he too was delighted to see the money coming to the county.

He also thanked the council agents for preparing the winning bid.

“This funding should provide a vital link for cyclists in Gloucester, or even those who possibly wish to cycle through the city from Stroud or Cheltenham,” he said.

“With the funding secured for this missing link, the Conservative administration must find the money for the long awaited route between Bishops Cleeve and Cheltenham and must work with all districts to create a comprehensive cycling network in our villages, towns and cities. , making cycling safer for shorter trips away from this “cycling backbone”.

Labor group leader John Bloxsom (Rodborough) said funding is welcome, but firm plans are needed for other areas forming the promised 26-mile ‘backbone route’ across the county. .

“In September, the Conservative cabinet ignored the protests and withdrew £ 435,000 in funding from the highly anticipated Cheltenham to Bishops Cleeve Cycleway,” he said.

“Labor is calling on the cabinet to reinstate this reduction and deliver on other planned routes through the DfT Active Travel Fund, Sustrans and its own capital resources. It is crucial that the county supports residents who wish to cycle more ”.

And Councilor Chris McFarling (Green, Sedbury) said that was great news for the county.

“It’s the best way to get your money’s worth by building cycle paths in urban areas,” he said.

“Of course, as always, we lose out in rural areas because we don’t have the number or density of the population.

“Nonetheless, if it can reduce carbon emissions in Gloucester, it is in my book because we all have to play our part.”

The offering supports improved access to and from the Gloucester Docks area, a former industrial area that has evolved into a thriving and vibrant mixed community of businesses, visitors and residents.

It will also connect the docks with the city center and beyond through a sustainable transportation corridor, helping students and employees access the local hospital, university and colleges from residential areas.

The cycle path will complete a ‘missing link’, connecting the recently upgraded Gloucester and Sharpness Canal towpath through the city center to Cheltenham via already committed funding.

This will be complemented by the resolution of a pinch point on the Gloucester South West Bypass (GSWB) at Llanthony Road, resulting in improved travel times for the 25,000 vehicles that use it daily.

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