For many years since the Chesterfield cycle audit in 2009 our Campaign and Derbyshire County Council have been attempting to identify a cycle route from the town centre to the Royal Hospital. Various ideas have been considered alongside Hady Hill but the problem has always been width at the top.
When the government announced the Emergency Active Travel Fund in summer 2020 we (and others) submitted various ideas to the County Council. Several online ‘tools’ were made available to councils which showed roads that had available width to build cycle infrastructure too.
The County Council took quick action (as required by the government) and closed Crow Lane to through traffic as well as Corporation Street. Councils could then submit bids for the second round of funding based on what action they had taken in the first round.
We are pleased to say that the County Council resisted opposition from a residents group in Brimington Common, their County Councillor (Stuart Brittain) and Toby Perkins MP (who had initially shown up to a photo call for the press to support the closure). Subsequently Borough Councillor Keith Falconer and prospective County Councillor Jack Woolley have also suggested roads should be reopened to through traffic.
The County Council have now made available their plans for an east – west cycle route which includes keeping Crow Lane closed to through traffic, updating the middle section and building a segregated 2 way cycle lane on Chatsworth Road from the Storrs Road jnc to Holymoor Road. This last section was opposed by both Labour and Conservative candidates in the recent County Council election (neither was elected!).
Following an online consultation we await news from DCC if the route will go ahead, if not £1.7M funding will have to be repaid and potentially losing funding from further rounds of active travel funding.
The County Council will make a decision on whether to go ahead on 14th October 2021. You can read the report going to cabinet here Chesterfield East-West Walking and Cycle Route