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Growing safety concerns over ‘speeding cyclists’ on Frenchwood and Avenham paths

Posted on - 25th July, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Avenham, Frenchwood, Parks, People, Preston City Centre, Preston Council, Preston Docks, Preston News, Transport
A section of the Guild Wheel Pic: Billy Matthews
A section of the Guild Wheel Pic: Billy Matthews

Prestonians are concerned that a serious accident could be caused by speeding cyclists on the Guild Wheel.

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Locals walking the riverside paths in Frenchwood and Avenham and Miller Parks say they no longer enjoy visiting the area as they are anxious about cyclists, pedestrians and dog walkers mixing together. Some say they are choosing to avoid the area completely.

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One Avenham local said: “It would appear that the Guild Wheel is used by many cyclists as a time trial circuit. For pedestrians there is a constant problem of cyclists approaching at speed from behind without any warning.

“Several times I have narrowly avoided being hit. Today I had a scare when again I narrowly missed being hit, and this time by four cyclists travelling together at racing speed.

“I know of one person, a jogger, who was seriously hurt and to compound matters she was then subjected to aggressive verbal abuse.

“Whilst I applaud the Council for its initiative in creating the Guild Wheel I think mixing cyclists with pedestrians was clearly a great mistake without the foresight of introducing adequate safety measures.

“Unless some action is taken there is the real risk of serious injury, even a fatality.”

A cyclist in Avenham Park
Pedestrians are calling for more restrictions and measures for cyclists. Pic: Tony Worrall

Safety suggestions from local walkers include a speed limit, clearly marked lanes for cyclists and pedestrians, and even having cyclists dismount and walk the length of the riverside paths.

Preston City Council has asked that cyclists and pedestrians be considerate when using cycle routes.

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Councillor Robert Boswell, Cabinet member for environment and community safety at Preston City Council, said: “The Guild Wheel is a great asset for Preston as a shared cycle and walking space, including the riverside paths. There is appropriate signage along the route, which is regularly reviewed.

“Incidents between cyclists and pedestrians are rare but we would ask that users of the Guild Wheel are considerate of others to ensure the space is enjoyable for everyone.”

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Are you a cyclist or pedestrian who uses Avenham Park or the Guild Wheel? Do you agree there are safety concerns? Let us know in the comments.

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