Let’s get cycling on the right path!

Meg Stark - 1079
Meg Stark - 1079

CYCLISTS are being called on to add support for an off-road route to be laid between Wilberfoss and York.

Keen cyclist Meg Stark from Wilberfoss says that pedalling along the A1079 can be an unpleasant experience, due to the amount of traffic travelling at speeds up to and beyond 60mph.

The 53 year-old works at York University as a technician and chooses to commute the eight-mile journey into the city every day on her bike.

However she feels others, who would normally be put off using their two-wheeled transport, would perhaps saddle up more if there was a safer option than the main carriageway.

She said: “I pick my times on a morning when the road is busy and it’s slow moving traffic, which is deliberate. That’s one of the reasons why I do not go that route when I come home on an evening - I go through Elvington.

“Most drivers are very good and give you enough space but some of them do not. The most dangerous area from a cyclist’s point of view is Kexby because some drivers try to overtake you next to the traffic islands.

““In an ideal world I would like to see an off-road cycle route between Wilberfoss and York - there’s already something usable from Wilberfoss to Pocklington, although it’s mostly road-edge on the outside of the white line.”

There is enough space but it would be very expensive - “If you create a route, people will use it. Look at the success of the Way of the Roses route which brings touring cyclists to Pocklington,” she added.

Having spoken with East Riding Council, Ms Stark has been told that although the A1079 provides “challenging conditions for cyclists”, there is no money for a track at present.

However, it could be considered during the development of the next funding programme as part of the local transport plan. Any plan would also need the input of the City of York Council, with the council boundaries meeting at Kexby.

She hopes other cyclists will now add their support by contacting both East Riding Council and the Pocklington-based group Action Access A1079, which promotes safety on the notorious road.

Graham Hicks, chairman of Action Access A1079 said: “I think that anything that can improve safety for all users of the A1079 corridor must be encouraged and welcomed. “Clearly the East Riding will become a more attractive place for those who work and study in York, so it makes sense to allow them to get there by sustainable transport if they can.

“I don’t think it is a case of whether or not it can be funded, but how we can all work to make it happen.

“As the Hodsow Lane roundabout has shown, if private enterprise can see benefit and contribute, anything is possible.”

Anyone wanting to support the idea of a cycle track should contact Ian Burnett, Strategic Transport Planning Manager of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, ian.burnett@eastriding.gov.uk Action Access A1079 would also like feedback from cyclists who use, or would like to use, the A1079. Contact Grahame Hicks on grayhicks@aol.com