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Cycleway call for busy main road

INITIAL talks have begun to fill a missing link in cycleways around Bognor Regis.


Tentative discussions have begun to outline the case to create the route along 225m on the eastern side of the A29 Shripney Road.


At present, the site between the roundabouts to the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars centre and McDonalds along the A29 is a grass verge.


This means cyclists and pedestrians either have to walk along a route which is set to become muddy in the winter and risk crossing the busy dual- carriageway – which links the two sections of the A259 northern relief road – to the cycleway and footpath on its opposite side.


County councillor Derek Whittington (C, Fontwell) said he saw 43 cyclists and nine pedestrians in just one hour last Tuesday going along the verge.


He had also spent nine minutes trying to cross the A29 before he gave up, faced with the incessant flow of traffic.


He held his first set of talks about the idea with highways officers last week after getting backing from councillors over the principle of the route.


“I am looking for a way forward from councillors. Do you agree with me starting to make enquiries about a cycleway/footpath along there?” he said.


“The verge would need to be three metres wide and it is certainly more than that at four metres. It is also owned by the highways authority, West Sussex County Council.


“If the path is created, it will provide the link with the cycleway along the A29 to the south to the relief road and over to the relief road to Felpham.


“Cyclists and pedestrians would also be able to stay safely on the eastern side of the A29 from the relief road to the crossing between Sainsbury’s and the M&S Foodhall.”


If the scheme proved feasible, his intention was to repeat the pattern which led to the one mile cycleway/footpath being opened between Barnham and Walberton three years ago.


“I got the support of all parish councils within ten miles, the schools and any other bodies I could think of before work started on that,” he said.


Cllr John Charles (C, Barnham) said: “This makes a lot of sense to me. That particular stretch of road is well used.”

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