The Kidical Mass Reading organiser recently described her visit to Beale Park with her two-year-old son. https://twitter.com/KidicalMassRead/status/1622723372898570240. When she arrived at Pangbourne Station she was faced with a long, steep flight of steps, which you can see in the photo, together with the beautiful murals. These steps are a barrier to cyclists with cargo bikes or child seats as well as people with mobility aids.
PAWS (Pangbourne & Whitchurch Sustainability) have contacted Network Rail about this problem, who are sympathetic but have no immediate plans to make the station more accessible. PAWS will continue to pressure Network Rail to make improvements at the station. Any members who use Pangbourne Station may also wish to contact Network Rail about this problem.
Pangbourne-Purley Feasibility Study
WBC has prepared a feasibility study, following discussions with PAWS, on the potential for Active Travel improvements on the A329 between the east end of Pangbourne village, Purley-on-Thames and potentially Tilehurst Station.
Whitchurch Bridge Southern Approach Feasibility Study
WBC has commissioned this study from consultants, with the study being focussed on identifying, at initial feasibility level, options for possible future pedestrian footway improvements on the southern approach to Whitchurch Toll Bridge.
Two e-Cargo bikes are now in regular use, including one being used by Dee Caf in Tilehurst and one by a music teacher to transport musical instruments. One remains available for an interested business. The profile of e-Cargo bikes for last mile sustainable freight movements is being highlighted more and more. https://www.transportxtra.com/publications/local-transport- today/news/72560/new-reports-cargo-bikes-make-business-as-well-as- environmental-sense/
West Berkshire Cycle Forum
The Forum met on 17 January 2023.
Several updates were provided about ongoing schemes. I have focused on those in the eastern area of West Berkshire.
Kennet and Avon Towpath
Sustrans upgrades at Burghfield from bottom of Mill Lane, Burghfield to Hissey’s Bridge south of Calcot (past the sailing club, where National Cycle Network route 4 follows Footpath 15): resurfacing with an asphalt surface has been completed and section fully re-opened. The hope is that the successful implementation of this scheme, coupled with the planned work elsewhere on NCN4 (Dewe Lane and Activation Project Aldermaston Wharf to Ufton Lane) will then unlock additional DfT funding for Sustrans to also restore the section from Garston Lock to the M4 Motorway Bridge, east of Theale. Sustrans are aware how that section has deteriorated and have been in contact with that landowner.
Off-road path from Mill Lane/Dewe Lane eastwards to River Kennet bank side – Sustrans have submitted planning application 22/03097/FUL which can be viewed at https://www.westberks.gov.uk/planning-application-search. This covers resurfacing with a sealed surface, drainage and other improvements, and widening of a 380m section of National Cycle Network Route 4.
Active Travel England and Scheme Updates
WBC has been awarded £57,000 by Active Travel England. This will be used to fund several assessments and consultations.
Data and evidence collection: CCTV cycle & pedestrian counts over a 7-day period for Calcot (IKEA) to Theale, to confirm current level of use and inform business case for potential future works including (in long term) possible future replacement of bridge over M4.
Calcot School Street
This has been approved as a scheme to remain in place, under reference ID 4097. WBC’s application for powers under Part 6 of the Traffic Management Act, for enforcement of moving traffic offences, was submitted in December 2022. Application being reviewed by Parliament in May 2023. This will underpin deployment of the CCTV at this site.
West Berks Cycle Forum
The next West Berkshire Cycle Forum Meeting is on Tuesday 16 May 2023. If there are any matters about cycling or active travel in West Berkshire that you would like raised at the meeting contact Rob Hill via email@example.com
WBC Campaigner for RCC