AN £80,000 active travel scheme will pop up in Aylesbury soon as transport chiefs aim to make the town easier to get around.

Southcourt estate will play host to improvements installed by Buckinghamshire Council, which will see existing cycleways connected to provide quieter and safer access for those walking around Aylesbury and to and from Stoke Mandeville hospital.

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It will involve temporary road closures, new cycle land segregation measures, installing new planters, lining and signage and more.

Bucks Free Press:

The scheme is a trial which residents can submit their feedback on during its use.

Its introduction in Aylesbury comes after a similar initiative was scrapped in Gerrards Cross following a backlash from residents.

A petition against the scheme received more than 1,400 signatures after Gerrards Cross residents complained about a lack of consultation before changes were made — alterations they said meant traffic would increase elsewhere in the area.

Nick Naylor, Buckinghamshire Council’s Transport boss, said the authority will be looking out for residents’ views while the trial is in place.

He added: “Adapting to life during the pandemic continues to have a profound effect on all our daily lives including the way we work, travel, socialise, get to school, shop and see our family and friends.

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“Changing our travel habits is one of those areas that can really help in the fight against coronavirus which is why we think schemes like this will help.

“While we’ve written to local residents across Southcourt and engaged with Aylesbury Town Council, tight government timescales have given us very little time to do any other public consultation, so we'll be looking for views while the trial is in place."

The £80,000 is funded by government plans to see if these new trials bring benefits to local communities.

Buckinghamshire Council received £514,000 in total and £28,000 was spent on the Gerrards Cross project.

Similar schemes are also planned for High Wycombe, Amersham and Haddenham.

Councillor Clive Harriss, cycling champion for Aylesbury Garden Town, added: “What we are doing is using our best local knowledge to install temporary measures where the payback is likely to be highest.

“And potentially it’s not just improvements to encourage cycling and walking, it’s safer roads, better air quality, a quieter neighbourhood and health benefits too.

"We know there are pros and cons with anything like this, which is why everything being installed to create the scheme is temporary as part of this three-month trial.

"What I am asking is that local people see how these schemes go, enjoy walking and cycling along the routes and, yes, be accepting of a little inconvenience potentially.

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“The most important thing is to let us have your feedback. There may be elements we can adjust or tweak as the scheme beds-in and things we can add to improve the way the scheme performs overall during the trial.”

Buckinghamshire Council said nothing will be made permanent during the trial, and any future proposals will be consulted on before decisions are made.

Cllr Naylor added: “What's important is that we give this a try and see if it works. If not, it will be removed, it's as simple as that."

To comment on the scheme, visit: