Sidmouth to Feniton cycleway bid looks promising
PLANS to set up a cycleway linking Sidmouth to Feniton are on the right track , according to the people behind the project
PLANS to set up a cycleway linking Sidmouth to Feniton are 'on the right track', according to the people behind the project.
A Devon Cycle Strategy report, which includes the idea of creating an Otter and Sid Valley Cycleway, will be presented to Devon County Council (DCC) cabinet members at a meeting next week.
County councillor Stuart Hughes, cabinet member for highways and transportation, has been pushing for this route for several years and will welcome the report at the meeting.
He said: "Now that the cycleway is mentioned in the report there is an ambition to provide that route.
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"It's not just going to happen overnight- there is still a lot to happen with it but we are definitely on the right track."
For ten years, both Mr Hughes and county councillor Roger Giles have been working towards creating the cycleway, which would run along the disused railway line from Feniton to Sidmouth via Ottery St Mary and Tipton St John.
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Although a bid to Investing in Devon for funding was unsuccessful last year, the pair have submitted a proposal for the cycleway to be included in the Government funded Local Transport Plan 2012-2017.
Mr Giles said: "I believe the report going before the DCC Cabinet on November 3 sets the framework for delivering the cycleway on the former Ottery railway line, for which there is considerable local support.
"A key factor now is to get the cycleway project included in the forthcoming Devon Local Transport Plan, and also in the East Devon Local Development Framework - something that Councillor Stuart Hughes and I have been working on, and which I believe can be achieved in the near future. When that happens I believe it will be possible to see a starting date for this vitally important scheme."
Mr Hughes added: "The cycleway will be good for the local economy and will link up Feniton Station which will encourage more people to cycle. And it will certainly benefit tourism in the area- we could actually see new businesses opening up.