Two wheel dangers in North Road

Bath’s ‘”Cycle Mayor” Pete Dyson is leading a campaign to get North Road in the city re-surfaced. He says this important road – which leads from the Warminster Road to Claverton – is so severely pot-holed that is a real danger to cyclists .

I understand there will be a demonstration at the location on Friday, November 24th at 3.30.

Pete says that this important link road now has severe potholes that are dangerous when people cycle down it. He feels that as winter approaches, the dark and wet conditions, combined with a row of parked cars on the downhill carriageway make large potholes even harder to navigate for school children, students and commuters.

These trips are vital, he says, and connect the communities in the East and North of Bath to two secondary schools, the university, Team Bath sports facilities, Wessex Water and new housing developments on the hill.

The campaign calls for Bath & North East Somerset Council to provide a commitment to resurface the road as soon as possible. Until this is achieved, the campaign will enable local residents, schools and university students to come out and make their voice heard.

The Cycle Mayor is inviting residents, commuters, university students and secondary school students to a demonstration to call for resurfacing of North Road at 3.30pm on Friday 24 November.

Pete said: “We will be meeting at the junction of North Road and Quarry Road, to walk or cycle down to the area of poor road surface for a peaceful demonstration. This gathering will not disrupt road traffic.

“The time is now because North Road was missed off the highway authority’s summer resurfacing works. This reflects a traditional view of highway engineering which prioritises road conditions that affect vehicle traffic.

But to encourage and enable active travel, we need road resurfacing criteria to account for the specific dangers to, and opportunities to enable, more cycling, wheeling and walking. This includes steep gradients, narrow streets, parked cars, street light quality, water runoff and sharp bends.”

Cllr Saskia Heijltjes, Member Advocate for Active Travel – Bath said: “We will continue to engage with Bath & North East Somerset Council officials until North Road is made safer for all users. This road is used by children to cycle to and from school, which is something that we should be supporting, but instead they have to endure a downhill with dappled lighting and deep potholes which are hard to avoid. When hit, they could cause serious injuries, or worse.”

John, parent of Ralph Allen School student commented: “North Road has been neglected for years and is increasingly dangerous for cyclists, especially children using it to commute to school but also experienced cyclists like myself. An accident feels inevitable. It’s re-surfacing is long overdue. ”

Cecelia Luttrel, mum of a secondary school student said: “My child cycles to school up North Road everyday and for a few hours after he has left the house I worry about the phone call that he has had an accident. The problem is even worse on the way home – he describes having to swerve to avoid the potholes and parked cars on that steep gradient.”

Cllr Joanna Wright added: “As former Cabinet Member for Transport I worked hard to create a safe route on North Road, but these plans were sadly not implemented. The least the Council can do is ensure the surface of this public highway is safe for all users.”

Meanwhile, Manda Rigby, B&NES cabinet member for Transport, said: “We review all roads regularly, to create an objective authority-wide list of those requiring either patching or resurfacing most urgently. We then also have to agree funding for this work during the budget setting process, concluding with council agreeing a budget in February.

I’m pleased to confirm that as long as we get the budget we anticipate, North Road is already on the list for resurfacing next year given the survey results.”

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