Resident blasts 'useless' new cycle lanes in Yorkshire town and fears for independent businesses

A resident has warned Rotherham Council’s leader that there will be no independent businesses left in the town thanks to disruption caused by roadworks, and branded cash spent on new cycle lanes ‘useless’.

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC) installed a traffic light cycle crossing on Biscay Way in Wath-Upon Dearne in July last year.

The new cycle route runs between Manvers Way and Wath town centre, and the council say it allows residents to access work in Manvers and Wath-upon-Dearne.

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Cash to fund he project was secured from the Department for Transport’s Transforming Cities Fund by the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority.

A cycle lane on Moor Road in WathA cycle lane on Moor Road in Wath
A cycle lane on Moor Road in Wath

However, resident Stacey Bradley spoke during a council cabinet meeting this week, to tell the leader that ‘nobody is happy’ with the cycle lane, as the traffic lights are causing congestion through Wath.

“Since those traffic lights were installed, the congestion in Wath-upon-Dearne and the roundabout is ridiculous,’ Ms Bradley told the meeting. “Is anybody looking at the negative effects of what’s been done? I live in that area and I’m yet to see any cyclists use that.”

Ms Bradley warned that independent businesses have been affected by the closure of Montgomery Road, and the bus stands, for resurfacing works.

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She added: “With all the work that’s going on there with the bus stands at the moment, disruption, there’s going to be no independent businesses left there soon thanks to the council and all the work that’s dragging out…..and more useless money being spent on cycle ramps that could have been spent on so much more regeneration.

“Perhaps the council needs to speak to the local people more. Nobody’s happy.”

However, councillor Chris Read, leader of the council, said the schemes were subject to public consultation, and the funding was specifically for active travel and public

He said: “Those schemes were subject to consultation, we did go out and speak to residents about those schemes in advance, so we did take feedback before they were built. The government put forward as part of their..programme requirements to the council that in order to fund transport schemes across the borough they had to relate to either active travel schemes or public transport schemes.

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“That money comes through the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority, we had to make a case to them when we thought we could make use of that money, and that included the Moor Lane scheme at Wath. Those schemes will only come to fruition over a period of time whilst people’s behaviours change. We need enough of that infrastructure to give people choices in order to move people out of their cars.”

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