HORSE riders, walkers and cyclists can now travel in greater safety between two villages in the Yorkshire Dales National Park without taking their life in their hands on a busy main road.
Work has just finished on the creation of a new bridleway linking Clapham and Austwick that avoids the A65 Skipton to Kendal road.
Until now, anyone travelling in either direction along the B6480 had to go on to the busy main road for about 400m before rejoining the quieter, minor road.
The new bridleway – a partnership project between the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, the Dales Integrated Transport Alliance and North Yorkshire County Council – cuts out the contact with traffic by running alongside the A65.
Austwick Parish Council chairman Ian Smith has expressed his satisfaction at the new bridleway, saying: “Austwick Parish Councillors are delighted that the new bridleway has finally arrived.
“Until now, walkers, horse riders and cyclists have had to take an extensive detour to travel safely between the two villages, the only alternative being to use a dangerous, winding section of the A65 itself.
“The new bridleway adds to the attractions of our most beautiful parts of the Yorkshire Dales.
“It will provide a safer and smoother connection between our village and neighbouring Clapham and also an easier alternative route for people using the ‘Way of the Roses’ cycle route.
“We are pleased that North Yorkshire County Council and the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority have finally been able to bring this long-awaited bridleway to fruition.”
Mark Weston, the The British Horse Society’s Director of Access, Safety and Welfare, added: “It is excellent that people will now have a safer means of travel and it is great that so many local authorities and organisation have cooperated for the benefit of vulnerable road users.”
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