Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Lympstone safety campaigners are calling for a new cycle route alongside the railline because of road safety concerns.
Members of Trail Action Group, which is backed by the parish council, has collected a 200-name petition calling for a new route outside the village.
The group says that in the village the problem is the busy narrow road and it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident.
And to make their point, protesters were out in force at the opening ceremony of the new Clyst Bridge section of the route on Tuesday to voice their concerns
Judith Carter, chairman of the group, said that many residents had witnessed ‘incidents’ which have been recorded in a log at the Post Office.
Judith says originally the track was not supposed to go through the village - but county bosses changed their minds.
She said: “Cyclists and pedestrians are especially vulnerable. Lympstone welcomes visitors and the benefits of the trail, but we are seeking to persuade the county council to provide an alternative route for through-cyclists and pedestrians.”
Although Devon County Council (DCC) has put up signs on road sections linking the Exe Estuary Trail to either side of Lympstone, she maintains that the single track is unsuitable for increasing volumes of traffic.
She added: “We are not against the trail. Lympstone residents, like others, have gained pleasure from it, and the local pubs, café and shops have benefited from the increased business.
“The problem lies with the decision to use the village roads as the only route for the trail through Lympstone.
“It’s a busy village with narrow single track roads, no pavements, steep hills and blind bends, and high pedestrian movement in and out of the village shops and pubs.
“The development of a route along the railway line, with clear access points to the village, would benefit everyone.
“It would enable commuter cyclists, joggers and others who don’t wish to stop in the village to pass by more quickly, with less risk of incident, while residents and visitors wishing to enter the village can do so easily. The village will therefore remain a safe and attractive environment, and visitors will continue to enjoy the services of the local businesses.”