Urgent call for Sidbury cycle track

PUBLISHED: 09:21 25 November 2011

Phil Weaver by the Sidford to Sidbury Road. Phil is a member of the 'Safelink Campaign' which is engaged with campaigning for a cycle path to link the two areas. Picture by Terry Ife. Ref shs 3730-47-11TI. To order your copy of this photograph, go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Phil Weaver by the Sidford to Sidbury Road. Phil is a member of the 'Safelink Campaign' which is engaged with campaigning for a cycle path to link the two areas. Picture by Terry Ife. Ref shs 3730-47-11TI. To order your copy of this photograph, go to www.sidmouthherald.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Archant

Sidford to Sidbury cycle track or path could save lives warns Sidmouth man

LIVES could soon be lost if a cycle track/footpath is not created between Sidford and Sidbury.

Phil Weaver of Temple Street, Sidmouth, who gave the warning, has revived his Safelink campaign, started two years ago, following the annual meeting of Sidmouth Town Council in Sidbury.

“If I lived in Sidbury I would not let my children cycle to Sidmouth College because the road is so dangerous,” said Phil, who recently wrote to Devon County Councillor Stuart Hughes about the need for a cycle track or path between the villages.

He asked whether the scheme had been put on DCC’s Local Transport Plan and if funding was in place for it, if landowners had been contacted about providing land for the pathway and when a completion date could be expected.

“Or,” he asked Mr Hughes, cabinet member for highways and transportation, “has nothing happened and are we still only having speculative dialogue?”

Phil said he would like to walk or cycle to see his friends in Sidbury, but was worried about the dangers of being run over. Many large lorries use the A375 as a through route to Honiton.

He said: “If you put children on that road they are at risk. There is no way you can walk along this road, you are playing with people’s lives here.”

Mr Hughes answered Phil, saying: “As the LTP has only just been adopted…the simple answer is no.

“We shall be looking at next year’s LTP programme within the next two months and my officers are only too well aware that I want to move on phase three of the Byes cycleway footway scheme.”

He said he was trying to secure funding for the Sidmouth College link to the cycleway “as Sustrans hasn’t provided funding, which is a great disappointment.”

Phil believes he has misinterpreted the need for a Sidbury cycle track, seeing it in terms of a leisure benefit, rather than as a safe means of getting from Sidbury to Sidford.

“The issue is people’s safety and it is really important this is flagged up. Someone will die on that road and very soon,” said Phil, who plans to organise a slow walk along the route after Christmas to highlight the need for action.

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