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Go-ahead for Warren Road cycleway

PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 December 2009 | UPDATED: 15:58 03 July 2010

WORK will start next spring to build a joint cycleway and footpath in Warren Road, connecting Hopton and Gorleston.

The decision to go ahead with what has proved to be a controversial plan was outlined in letters sent to objec-tors and those in favour this week.

WORK will start next spring to build a joint cycleway and footpath in Warren Road, connecting Hopton and Gorleston.

The decision to go ahead with what has proved to be a controversial plan was outlined in letters sent to objec-tors and those in favour this week.

A spokesman for Mott MacDonald says in the letter: “Taking into consideration all views expressed, both for and against the scheme, we feel that on balance the benefits to the wider community justify the scheme being progressed.”

The cycleway was identified in 1996 as part of the Great Yarmouth cycling strategy but lay on file until 2005, when a cycling feasibility report was produced.

In June 2007, a 12-hour, two-way count was made along the route and showed that 34 pedestrians and 18 cyclists, six of them children, had used it.

The aim of a formalised cycle-way/footpath is to provide an alternative route avoiding the busy A12 and to link the two communities.

A public meeting was held at Gorleston Golf Club in October to explain the scheme and was attended by 42 residents. On a show of hands, all but one were opposed to the scheme.

There have been other meetings raising points of concern, including the possible adoption of Warren Road by the county council, but local people have been assured this will not be the case.

The council does intend to adopt the southern section, and the surfacing of the path will be finished using materials sympathetic to the surroundings, say officials.

Residents felt the existing cycleway along the A12 was an acceptable alternative route. However, the council thought it was unsuitable for pupils who travelled to the Cliff Park schools at Gorleston from Hopton.

Many parents were unwilling to let their children cycle to school because they felt the A12 was not safe.

Drainage was also a concern of residents. The county proposed improvements at a localised dip in Warren Road and water was to be directed to soakaways on nearby golf club land. Five Warren Road residents objected to this proposal, fearing it would worsen flooding problems.

In responses to the proposals, those not in favour were county and borough councillor Bert Collins and 27 Warren Road residents.

In favour were 16 Warren Road residents, county and borough councillor Gerry Cook, Hopton Parish Council and Gorleston Golf Club.

Letters of support had come from Great Yarmouth Cycle Forum, Norfolk police, Sustrans and Yarmouth Borough Council.

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