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Major town centre cycling improvements announced for Beaconsfield
MEASURES to improve cycling in a busy town centre were announced at a funding meeting last night.
The changes in Beaconsfield will see cycle parking near the station doubled, increased signage and potential changes to the town’s busy mini-roundabouts to improve safety for cyclists.
The plans announced by Bucks County Council at the Beaconsfield Forum also include an aspirational cycle path network of on and off-road routes throughout the town.
A presentation by the county council’s Sustainable Travel Service praised the Beaconsfield Cycle Path Action Group for its help and co-operation in identifying the changes needed in town.
The group of residents formed in 2011 initially to improve cycling access around schools, but has since worked with BCC and travel charity Sustrans in identifying cycling improvements needed across the whole of Beaconsfield.
After BCC successfully bid for £90,000 of funding from the government under the ‘Acesss to Stations’ (A2S) scheme, the group focused its recent work on improving life for commuting cyclists.
This allowed members to secure an extra £23,000 from this year’s Local Area Forum – a council cash pot dedicated to improving life for residents in Bucks towns.
And a further £200,000 is available from the government’s Cycling Safety Fund which could be used to make changes to mini roundabouts on Station Road to improve cyclists’ safety.
However, this money would be lost unless spent by next March, with Town Councillors keen to start a public consultation as soon as possible.
Cycle path group member Belinda Avery said: “What has happened so far is definitely good news, but it is only just the beginning.
“So far we have built the plans into the access to stations scheme but there’s so much more to consider, like looking at schools and getting kids on their bikes.
“We’ve consulted a lot ourselves and had positive feedback, so we’re confident at any formal consultation there will be a lot of support out there for what we want to do.”
The A2S funding of £90,000 will now be added to the Forum cash to begin changes around Beaconsfield Station.
Parking for 120 bikes to the north of the station will be installed along with CCTV, with a further 60 added to the south doubling the current provision.
The action group has helped council officers map out an entire cycle route network across Beaconsfield, which the council is now studying in the hope it can be implemented over the coming years.
In March, the group were successful in getting a dedicated cycle path installed from Seeleys to the centre of town.
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