Friday, August 29 - Cycle safety fear

PUBLISHED: 13:57 29 August 2008 | UPDATED: 09:34 10 June 2010

CONCERN'S about the safety of a narrow section of the cycle path on the Esplanade has been growing.

CONCERN'S about the safety of a narrow section of the cycle path on the Esplanade has been growing.

Residents have branded the path along Queen's Drive as dangerous for families with children - and there are fears that there could be an accident.

Ivan Prior of Egremont Road said: "The thing is an abomination. This is a holiday resort, with little ones and their families coming to enjoy the sand and the sea.

"They're excited, they're in an unfamiliar situation, and they're wandering all over the place.

"Children aren't looking each way for traffic, as far as they are concerned they are on a pavement."

He said the footpath just wasn't wide enough to allow for cyclists to mingle with 'a mixture of excited children, pushchairs, windbreakers, rolling buckets and plastic spades.'

He added: "Authorities are constantly carrying on something alarming about health and safety. Was the responsible officer on holiday when this cycle path was planned?"

A Devon County Council spokesman said: "The provision of a continuous, safe off-road route along the sea front was considered necessary in order to cater for families with young children and other slower, less confident cyclists who would not wish to cycle in the road.

"Where there is room, a separate cycle lane has been marked out and it is generally 1.5m wide.

"The remaining 'footway' width generally varies between about 1.5m and 2.5m - i.e. where additional width was available, this was given over to the pedestrian, as it is accepted that people in groups will generally wish to walk side-by-side, whereas most cyclists will if necessary proceed in single file along the busier sections.

"We are arranging for additional cycle symbols to be provided along the route to specify which is the pedestrian side and which is the cycle side.

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