Success – Guildford Godalming off road all weather cycle and footpath plan from GCC & G-BUG adopted by Surrey County Council & Guildford Borough Council
Yesterday, after 74 miles on John Child’s excellent Wednesday ride, Pat (WSCTC & G-BUG) joined Nigel Burke (G-BUG), Martyn Sandford and two fellow Godalming Cycle Campaign members in the Guildford Council Chambers for a well-attended joint SCC & GBC meeting.
See item 10, page 19 for details of the presented documentation and path .
Becky Willson (Transport Planner Cycling Surrey County Council) proposed to adopt the Guildford to Godalming Greenway into the Guildford Borough Cycle Plan , and it was accepted nem con. Indeed, all the Councillors who spoke were very supportive, and praised the thoroughness of the documentation initiated by Martyn from GCC. The Councillors main concern was perhaps the danger of raising expectations beyond what could be funded, but Becky said that by dividing it into sections they hoped to be able to secure funding piece by piece (eg Dunsfold 106 money).The importance of lighting was stressed for away-from-road sections, in order that children would feel safe using it to go to school in winter. Becky said that modern LED lighting offered economic solutions eg for Dagley Lane.
The stretch into Guildford Town Centre was judged to be very important but the proposed option in front of Debenhams might be difficult to implement: Cllr Nils Christiansen (GBC, Holy Trinity) suggested “what about replacing the Rowing Club footbridge so that people could cycle over it and come in along Millmead”. (hallelujah!)
Need link via towpath with new Walnut Bridge.
Ties in with proposals for a ‘Park and Cycle’ car park at Shalford/Stonebridge Wharf.
The aim is for an all-year all-weather sealed surface suitable for all bikes, prams etc.
Councillors said “We need more routes like this.” (thought: what about an Ash-Guildford greenway, based on improving the Christmas Pie Trail?)
So, good news, for once. It really was good to have an influential political forum like this discussing a cycling proposal in such a positive way, none of the usual anti-cycling gripes. The tone was ‘we must make this happen’ rather than ‘how can we stop it’.
Congratulations to Martyn and his team, and Becky for taking it forward. There is still a long way to go, but it is great to have cleared this essential political hurdle.
The original pre submission to SCC and GBC are:
- An Executive Summary
- The Proposal (i.e. details of the spine and its side links)
- The Alternative Routes (i.e. routes we assessed and parked in favour of the final proposal)
- An Index to the Maps