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Bromham Road Railway Bridge Rebuild

The bridge is one of CCNB's three top campaigning schemes to complete gaps in the Bedford urban network.

Since the Department for Transport’s commitment for the electrification of the Midland Mainline to the north in their High Level Output document of 2012 and the later need to raise the bridge we have been waiting for Network Rail to come up with a plan for the bridge rebuild which would include safe cycle infrastructure for all the hundreds of cyclists who have to cross the bridge, either dicing with death or serious injury on the narrow carriageway amongst continuous traffic including many HGVs and buses or riding illegally on the narrow pavement. This includes students cycling to school, residents cycling to the railway station as well as many other cyclists who have to use the bridge for a whole range of reasons.

The time has now arrived with the sudden announcement by Network Rail of a public consultation at the Bedford Corn Exchange on Friday 20 April 2018. For information see here. The plans for the new bridge do not show the provision of any cycle infrastructure.

A planning application (18/00918/EIASCR) has now also been submitted to Bedford Borough Council for an environmental impact assessment screening opinion. For the plan see page 30 of document v01 here.

A short history of this project and what cycle infrastructure had been requested can be seen on CCNB’s website here.

Cycle to Save Your Hard Earned Money

Following on from last October's rise in car parking charges at Bedford railway station the New Year saw not only an increase in rail fares for commuters but also a progressive increase in motoring costs due to rising petrol/diesel prices.

Please encourage your non-cycling friends to save money by occasionally leaving the car in the drive and cycling (or walking) that short distance to the town centre or railway station. The fitness achieved can then give further savings by the cancellation of the monthly gym subscription.

Winter Potholes

Do not let that pothole get any bigger than necessary.

If you see one on your travels please report it to the Bedford Unitary Authority Helpdesk - If they no not know about it, it will not be filled in. Large one are normally repaired by the Pothole Squad within 2 working days and smaller ones within 6 weeks from the date of reply.

Puncture Prevention Tips - British Cycling

Punctures always seem to happen at the worst possible times; when you're running late on a commute, on a freezing wet training ride at the top of an exposed hill or in an important event. Lock at British Cycling's top tips and take the steps to avoid getting as many in the current puncture prone climate.

Ford End Road Bridge Closure

Ford End Road Bridge will be closed from 16 February 2018 to sometime between the end of June and the end of August 2018 to allow for one arch on the bridge to be raised for the Midland Mainline electrification project by Network Rail. Pedestrians and walking cyclists will still be able to use the adjacent metal footbridge while all vehicles will have to travel via Bromham Road Bridge to reach the town centre or the railway station using Hurst Grove as the diversion route. To ease the traffic flow there will be traffic lights at its junction with Bromham Road. For further details see the Network Rail webpage here.

Bromham Road Bridge is due to be upgraded between June and December 2019 although no plans have been released to date.

New Year Message

Cycling Campaign for North Bedfordshire (CCNB) would like to wish all Bedford Borough current and potential cyclists a Happy New Year.

Last year, Cycling Campaign for North Bedfordshire's (CCNB's) 25th year of promoting cycling and campaigning for better cycling infrastructure, continued to see an increase in Bedford and Kempston residents cycling. Regular counts at Bedford railway station gave an average 4% higher than for 2016, making it an 80% increase since 2006. The last Active Peoples Survey indicated that more than 30,000 Bedford Borough residents maid in excess of 5,000,000 cycle trips per annum.

What would congestion and pollution be like if there were no cyclists?

Bedford and Kempston has an extensive cycle network to enable people of all ages and abilities to safely get around the town without having to use the busy main roads so there is no excuse for not trying this quick and cheap mode of transport.

2017 saw the completion of the Riverside North development incorporating a new cycle/pedestrian bridge across the river with cycleway improvements along the north side of the river and a raised crossing on the Hastingsbury route in Thirlmere Road in Kempston.

To improve cycle security at a cyclist’s destination the year also saw a number of cycle parking stands installed as part of new developments; Riverside North, Norse Road sports facility, Towers Health and Rackets Club in Clapham Road, Aldi store in Ampthill Road, Lidl store in Ridge Road, Kempston, Coop store in Queens Drive Putnoe and Peacock’s new auction house in Wallis Road. Other stands were installed in Castle Road, Bromham Road and Midland Road, courtesy of Castle Ward Borough Members. Redundant ‘Sheffield’ cycle parking stands from Bedford railway station were also installed at Biddenham village hall and ones from Sandy railway station given to Mark Rutherford School in Wentworth Drive Putnoe.

Further improvements in cycling infrastructure are planned over the next few years - safe crossings of the A6/A421 junction and Bromham Road railway bridge to name just two - as well as improvements to many junctions as part of the Mayor's £18m project to cut traffic congestion.

Let us see ‘more residents cycling, more safely, more often' during 2018 to ensure that Bedford becomes a true ‘Town of Cyclists’ and ‘Cycle Friendly Communities’. Remember, every resident who takes up cycling means one less polluting vehicle causing congestion on Bedford’s roads making it easier for those residents that have to use a motor vehicle.