Wish List for a cycle-friendly Cheltenham

Strategic issues    |    Local issues    |    Under consideration

This is Cheltenham & Tewkesbury Cycling Campaign's Wish List for changes to improve conditions for cycling in Cheltenham. It guides the Campaign's strategy in discussions with Cheltenham and Gloucestershire councils.

The Wish List is divided into three sections. The first section deals with the major barriers to cycling which impact on the strategic network for cycling. The second section includes relatively minor issues that if attended to would improve the cycling environment locally, but would not have a major impact on the general road network of the town. The third section comprises additional items that the Campaign is considering but which have not yet been included in the Wish List.

Cyclists in Cheltenham are invited to contribute to the Wish List, by commenting on items that are included and by suggesting new items for possible inclusion. Please feed back your views here.

Strategic issues

Cheltenham town centre one-way system   map

The town inner ring has two negative impacts on cycling. On the one hand it prevents legal journeys by bike which would seem entirely logical on paper, and therefore causes confusion and extra journey times as well as extra vehicle conflicts. On the other hand it also increases overall vehicle speeds.

Examples of barriers are the following:

Solution: The solution lies in looking at the whole of the road network to see where two way traffic could be reinstated with sufficient traffic management measures to prevent through traffic being drawn back into the town

Grosvenor Place South to High Street   map

Allowing cycling along the pedestrianised section of Grosvenor Place South would provide a very useful route north from the town centre.

Solution: The blind junction at High Street could be overcome by placing low level planters or similar objects to deflect pedestrians in High Street away from the junction.

Henrietta Street   map

The contra-flow cycle lane in this street is frequently obstructed with the parking of motor vehicles, especially for deliveries. Vehicles are also deflected towards the cycle lane when there is illegal parking up to the junction with St Margaret's Road.

Solution: It may be better to have two-way cycling without a cycle lane. This would require clear signing and preferably a 20mph speed limit and some reduction in parking. An island to protect cyclists waiting at St Margaret's Road is also desirable.

High Street, Henrietta Street to Promenade   map

Allow two-way cycling.

Solution: Introduce as part of plans to allow buses and cycles to cross Clarence Street directly at High Street (Boots Corner). Elsewhere, signing only is needed in a street that is already restricted to buses and access traffic.

High Street, Strand to London Road   map

Allow two-way cycling to provide a direct route eastwards from the town centre.

Solution: Best achieved by reducing westbound traffic to a single lane. There is an alternative route for through traffic via College Road and Bath Parade. A contra-flow cycle lane may be needed.

Honeybourne Line to Shelburne Road missing link   map

The Honeybourne route is well used and gives fast access for some areas of the town. The link to the station is popular and extending the track to St Stephens would open up some journey opportunities to people in Hatherley giving faster journey times to a number of destinations such as the station, town centre and leisure centre.

 

Millbrook Street to New Street   map

Honeybourne Way had a major impact on severing a quiet route for pedestrians and cyclists from the western half of Cheltenham to the centre. The present arrangements are very unsatisfactory and further efforts need to be made to make the route of higher quality and more direct. Perhaps the use of the space needs to be carefully considered, reallocating space away from motor vehicles. The road layout at present is built for high speeds with the use of two medium sized roundabouts which is inappropriate in this location.

Montpellier Street   map

Two-way cycle use of the whole of this road would provide an alternative cycle route to the narrow Montpellier Walk. The narrowing to provide a pedestrian crossing near Fauconberg Road would need to be revised. Improved egress from Montpellier Street towards Royal Well Road should be incorporated into changes to the adjacent road junctions.

North Street and Albion Street/North Place   map

The present layout of this junction encourages drivers heading for North Place to cut across cyclists turning (with priority) into Albion Street.

Solution: Realignment to slow traffic going ahead.

Pittville Gates   map

Restoring a cycling link through Pittville Gates would enable a route from the Pittville area that avoids the busy Prestbury Road roundabout. This should be integrated into work being advocated by the Friends of Pittville to restore the gates.

Progress: Gates restored but no cycle access. However, LSTF cycle route signing does sign through gates.

Pittville Street, High Street to Albion Street   map

Allow two-way cycling.

Solution: Will require an additional traffic signal at Albion Street, phasing concurrent with the southbound bus and cycle lane phase.

Promenade / St Georges Road junction   map

A difficult junction for many cyclists as a lot of traffic turns left at St Georges Road and Royal Well Place.

Solution: Some revision to layout and/or signal phasing to protect cycle movements.

Promenade, Imperial Square to Crescent Terrace   map

Allow two-way cycling (including Crescent Terrace itself).

Solution: Will require layout changes at the Imperial Square end, but no alterations to the signals.

Racecourse / Bishops Cleeve   map

A more pleasant way to reach Cheltenham from Bishops Cleeve would encourage more people to cycle to the town centre and is often requested. Evesham Road past the racecourse is too fast and narrow for many people. There are alternative possibilities through the racecourse but these involve private roads and access is restricted. 

Solution: Negotiation to come to some arrangement with the racecourse management is required.

Progress: Scheme being developed by Gloucestershire County Council for a future funding bid. To comprise two routes: one along A435, the other an extension to the Honeybourne Line.

 

River Chelt cycle route   map

New cycle path along River Chelt from Colletts Drive to connect with upgraded footpaths behind Brooklyn Gardens to Princess Elizabeth Way. Requires new bridge over the railway.

Rodney Road at High Street   map

Only a short section of Rodney Road is one-way. This should be two-way for cycling to be compatible with the High Street being two-way, which is pending.

Royal Well Road, Clarence Street, North Street   map

Allow two-way cycling as part of proposals to restrict these roads to buses, cycles and access traffic.

St Annes Road   map

Allowing cycling two-way in this road would provide a shorter and less congested route between the town centre and Fairview.

St James Street at High Street   map

Traffic often turns too quickly into St James Street because of the priority given to traffic over pedestrians through the use of guardrailing.

Solution: Move pedestrian crossing to the junction as a zebra crossing, to oblige turning traffic to go more slowly.

Suffolk Parade   map

Two-way cycling along the whole of this road could much assist access between roads south of Suffolk Road and the town centre. Suffolk Road can also be difficult to cross. Moving the pedestrian crossing to the Great Norwood Street/Suffolk Parade junction might assist.

Westal Green to Tivoli and St Stephens Road   map

Westal Green cycle track was one of the earliest cycle schemes in Cheltenham, and was welcomed by the campaign at the time. It also carries some of the heaviest flows of cycle traffic in Cheltenham. However it does have some weaknesses and the actual layout has now been altered to the detriment of cyclists and pedestrians. The main problem is the access at the end of the shared use footway into St Stephens Road and on to the Tivoli area. The other problem is the phasing of the lights which can mean long crossing times for any cyclist or pedestrian using the lights legally.

The crossing of St Stephens Road is difficult as it is very often blocked by queuing vehicles, the volume of vehicles is high, and visibility is not good for the various vehicle movements. At present it is not possible to get to the network of quiet streets around Tivoli and Bath Road from the west without crossing the A40 twice, making use of the Westal Green facility pointless.

Solution: There are no obvious solutions, but this is an area where a detailed study might be worthwhile.

 

Winchcombe Street, Albion Street to High Street   map

Allow two-way cycling.

Solution: Will require some minor changes to the layout at Albion Street, but no changes to the traffic signals.

Local issues

Back Montpellier Terrace   map

This is a very useful route for access to the hospital from the western side of Cheltenham. The route is now is two way. However there are some details which need addressing. There are areas of contraflow where the signing needs improving and the junction with Bath Road is very unsatisfactory from the point of view of accessing the hospital.

Solution: Improve crossing of Suffolk Square, improve signing. Signal alterations at Bath Road

 
 

Cambray Place   map

Link required between Rodney Road and Cambray Place

This would give useful links with the Charlton Kings cycle route in the opposite direction of the Inner Ring.

Solution: Widen footway to provide for shared use.

Charlton Kings Cycle Route junction with Moorend Road   map

The exit/entry point onto Moorend Road is very tricky, with poor visibility.

Solution: Improve the entrance, measures to slow the traffic and improve visibility.

 
 

Charlton Kings cycle route, St Judes Walk   map

An additional access to the Charlton Kings route would be useful, in that it would extend the number of destinations which could reached by it.

Solution: Open a route from Chancel Park / St Judes Walk to the existing cycle route.

Coronation Square   map

Gyratory systems are always a problem for cyclists and Coronation Square is no exception. What makes matters worse is that the largest housing estate is on one side of the square and the shops are on the other.

Solution: Remove the gyratory system and make the main through route two way along on side of the square. Any cycle route would only have to make one crossing of the route. A solution which is solely based on the pavement route would not work because of the conflic

 
 

Gloucester Road: crossing to Campden Road   map

Links poorly designed with inappropriate barriers and sharp bends.

Solution: Re-align accesses to crossing.

Hatherley Lane / B&Q   map

Cycle facilities from Gloucester Road to Hatherley Lane and B&Q are poorly designed and difficult to use. The short existing track along Gloucester Road is well-dimensioned (but badly lit at night). However, it leads to what may be the worst cycle facility in Cheltenham.

Solution: Re-design route from the A40 with cycle priority all the way to B&Q, Hatherley Lane and Grovefield Way.

 

High Street at St Pauls Street South   map

St Pauls Street South is closed at High Street but it is easy to pass through the closure cycling. This should be regularised.

 

Honeybourne Line at Folly Lane   map

Surface of access poor and barriers are awkward and a hazard.

Also barrier at nearby path junction a hazard, especially as it is at the foot of a steep hill.

Solution: Re-align barriers and lay additional surfacing.

Honeybourne Line at Queens Road   map

Queens Road island and bus stop badly sited for cycle access to Honeybourne Line. The barriers by the kerb make visibility and manoeuvring difficult, creating a hazard.

Solution: Re-design area, perhaps moving buses to station forecourt as originally intended. Remove barriers.

 

Jersey Street   map

The introduction of a cycle gap through the road closure near Holy Trinity School would improve access by cycling to both the town centre and the school.

 

Junction of Swindon Road, Kingsditch Lane and Runnings Road   map

Very tricky complex of mini-roundabouts with multiple lane entries. Very poor quality and unsafe shared footway.

Solution: Redesign entire area

Kingsmead Road to Grevil Road   map

The approaches to the toucan crossing are at ninety degrees on both sides of the road.

Solution: Widen access paths to cut corners off, and improve access onto Arle Road.

 
 

Lansdown Road by Gloucester Road   map

Entrance to cycle track next to bridge near lights: dropped kerbs hazardous

Lansdown Road cycle track   map

Although there is still some debate within the cycling community about how useful this route really is, it is used by a large number of cyclists. However there are still some serious problems along the route particularly at the junctions.

Solution: Improve junction with Lansdown Parade, and close road with Lansdown Walk.

 
 

North Place / St Margarets Road   map

Traffic backs up at these traffic lights

Solution: An advanced stop line

Old Bath Road: Cox's Meadow   map

Indirect and awkward route from cycle path to road

Solution: Connect path direct to Sandford Road roundabout

Park Lane to Gordons Lamp   map

This area (including Suffolk Square) can be very congested with parking blocking access to the crossing. The advisory lane peters out in Park Place.

Solution: Widen existing advisory lane and extend to cul-de-sac. Protect entrance to Gordons Lamp crossing

 

Pittville Crescent Lane   map

Short one-way section at end of Pittville Crescent Lane necessitates a long detour.

Solution: Allow cycling two-way along this short section of road

 

Prestbury Road roundabout and Albert Road   map

Traffic speeds are still too high in Albert Road. Traffic uses Albert Rd as rat run and the roundabout is tricky to negotiate and intimidating.

Solution: Investigate ways of closing Albert Road at some point for through traffic. Traffic calming in Albert Road.

Progress: Traffic calming project implemented but not very successful. Roundabout still perceived as a barrier by some cyclists.

Promenade / Post Office Lane   map

Post Office Lane was originally designated as the alternative route to the Promenade. It was accepted as a compromise despite the recommendations of the working party which agreed that the Promenade should be used for cycling.

The problem is that the route is still poorly lit, it is frequently blocked by delivery vehicles, the surface is poor, it is not direct, security is an issue at night time, and there are cycle/motor vehicle conflicts such as with reversing lorries.

Solution: Reinstate cycling in Promenade along designated route. Two-way cycling would be the preferred option here.

Progress: Cycle access to the Promenade planned for 2011.

 
 

Queens Hotel   map

Originally the road layout here was such that cyclists could proceed straight across from Fauconberg /Queens Circus to Imperial Sq. The road was altered to enable the former road train to turn but entailed a new layout which meant cyclists had to perform a right turn without any protection in a central refuge. This was a layout we had objected to. This is an important route for cyclists.

Solution: Re-design layout.

Royal Well Lane: paths along River Chelt   map

Very narrow with visibility problems.

Solution: Widen and re-align existing paths

 
 

Tanners Lane   map

Next to the pelican crossing in Princess Elizabeth Way there is a lane leading to Village Road which is heavily used by the pupils of Hesters Way Junior School and is on the route to the proposed academy. There is no lighting.

Solution: Install lighting.

Progress: Some tarmac now laid, access at PE way end to be improved

Telstar Road / Gloucester Road junction   map

Cyclists using Miserden Road have to make two right turns, with no obvious route to the crossing.

Solution: Create new cut through from Miserden Road to the crossing.

 

Tewkesbury Road   map

The Tewkesbury Road is a very fast road with heavy traffic, but also provides a route for a number of cyclists, and there is no real alternative for some journeys.

Solution: A pavement route is not likely to provide a satisfactory solution. Removal of road space for cars and a reduction of the speed limit is likely to be more effective in positively promoting the bike. Making the near-side lane wider could make it cyclist-fri

 

The Park   map

The traffic speeds are still too high here and the cycle lane is too narrow with pinch points occurring where there are islands

Solution: Installation of activated speed signs. Removal of centre line, widen cycle lane, remove traffic islands

Welland Lodge Road to New Barn Lane footpath   map

To provide useful north/south link, avoiding a long diversion.

Solution: Widen and remove barriers as part of future housing development to give link to Prestbury.

 

Wellington Street   map

Allow two-way cycling.

Solution: Only requires changed to traffic order and signing.

 

Wymans Brook to Pittville   map

An informal track crosses the old railway line at the back of Roman Hackle Avenue and then crosses the Approach Golf Course to Tommy Taylors Lane. It is used by children going to and from Pittville School. A formal cycle path could be useful to many people who live in Wymans Brook.

Under consideration

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Solution: a

Progress: a

Clarence Street, St Georges Place to Clarence Parade   map

Allow two-way cycling. Perhaps extend to Ambrose Street.

Solution: Change to traffic order and signing only needed.

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