Mel Stride MP has welcomed the announcement that Devon will receive £2.4million from the Government’s Active Travel Fund - designed to create safe space for cycling and walking. Devon County Council will receive £1.3million and the unitary authorities of Plymouth and Torbay will receive £945,000 and £132,000. The Government is allocating the money to local councils to fund measures such as School Streets, Low Traffic Neighbourhoods and segregated cycle lanes.
In total, £175 million is being allocated to local authorities across England, with councils having to meet tough new conditions to ensure that schemes are properly thought out. The funding is part of a record £2billion of investment to double cycling and increase walking by 2025 and is in addition to more than £27 billion that will be invested in England’s roads over the next five years.
Mr Stride said:
“The Government is right to focus on making our bounce back from the Covid-19 pandemic a green one and is investing record sums of money in cycling infrastructure. I am exploring whether an extension of the Wray Valley Trail from Moretonhampstead to Chagford would meet the criteria for this funding and have written to the Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps MP.”
West Devon Borough Councillor Nicky Heyworth who represents Chagford Ward and began the campaign for the extension of the trail said:
“I am grateful for Mel really getting behind our campaign, helping us to lobby for funding and for coming to Chagford last week to discuss the issue with me in person. An extension of the trail would enable more people to safely cycle or walk between Moretonhampstead and Chagford, taking cars off the roads, and would bring more visitors to Chagford, benefiting local businesses.”