New 'cycling corridor' for Southwark planned through local park

Burgess Park in Southwark could be used for a new cycle way to link together the London borough for cyclists

General cycling riding on road

Opposition has emerged to the proposals by a London council that would see a cycle lane created through the middle of a popular local park.

Southwark Council proposed the idea of a cycling corridor in their recent cycling strategy that would link the entire borough.

Named Southwark Spine cycle route, the council says that the route will be “cohesive, direct, safe, attractive, comfortable and easy to navigate for all ages and abilities.”

It is intended to cut through the 140 acres Burgess Park but Friends of Burgess Park (FOBP) have written to the council to suggest a redesign of the route.

Also setting up a petition, FOBP insist that they do not discourage cycling in the park but they do not believe the Spine cycle route is a sensible option given that the area’s population is rising and large numbers of cyclists that use the park are commuting.

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FOBP disagree with the council’s claim that “links through parks and open spaces will be designed to avoid conflict with other users”.

FOBP responded: “Commuter cycling at speed is not compatible with other park activities and affects the enjoyment and safety of other park users. Naturally, commuter cyclists want to use the most direct route at the greatest possible speed for their twice daily commute.

“Unfortunately, when that is straight across Burgess Park, they become the traffic hazard for other park users.”

FOBP propose that the route should be redirected to avoid the park and propose a greenway on nearby Wells Way which would require the implementation of cycle lanes.

Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.

Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.