CAMPAIGNERS for a traffic-free walking and cycling route were disappointed to see their project was not included in a key transportation document.

The Wotton, Charfield and Kingswood Greenway Group was set up in 2017 to promote and support the creation of a safe, traffic-free route to connect communities in the area.

Members of the group believe that a safe, off-road walking and cycling route would bring many benefits, including reducing congestion, improving air quality, road safety, health and wellbeing.

The Greenway could also help to encourage cycling and walking tourism in the area – and would enable cyclists to connect to the Route 410 of the National Cycle Network (the Avon Cycleway).

The project idea was given a boost in November 2017, when the West of England Joint Spatial Plan publication document stated that a walking and cycling link would be part of the Strategic Transport Package for Charfield – if the proposed housing development there goes ahead.

It was therefore disappointing for Greenway supporters that their project was not included in the latest West of England Joint Spatial Plan consultation document – which identifies the priority transport infrastructure projects for the area.

Chair of the Greenway Group, Alex King said: “South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) propose to take the Greenway forward through development of their Local Plan, but we feel that it should be included in this Joint Spatial Plan report – with funding assigned – as we know that the project needs significant funding.

“The Greenway is a worthwhile and cost-effective plan for our local infrastructure which directly supports the Joint Spatial Plan’s objectives for transport.”

Cllr Mark Rosher, Chair of Charfield Parish Council, said: “Charfield, like Kingswood and Wotton under edge, lies on the county border between Gloucestershire and South Gloucestershire, and in fact Gloucestershire and the new West of England Combined Authority.

"Only in such a peripheral location would this situation prevail, where our youth cannot safely access the nearest significant recreational site - itself part funded by their village.

“Here there is no safe foot and cycleway to the nearest secondary school, and doctors’ and dentists’ surgeries.

“We need a Greenway now, and with significant development proposed in the Joint Spatial Strategy it should be fully funded through the JSP.

"We call on the WECA Mayor, Gloucestershire County Council and Stroud District Council to make this Greenway happen.”

A spokesperson for SGC said: “The schemes described in the current consultation documents are the major transport projects, many of which have national significance, and which may require additional funding from central government (e.g. improved motorway junction and new rail station).

“This document provides the building blocks to submit future funding applications to deliver these schemes, as well as informing residents and other stakeholders of the progress made on these options to date.

"They do not describe all of the projects that could support growth proposed in the JSP, merely the most significant in terms of cost and wider impact.

“Delivery of the more local mitigation measures, such as junction improvements, traffic calming measures, pedestrian and cycle improvements including potentially the Greenway project, as well as public rights of way, bus services and any other identified requirements, will be worked-up further through the Local Plan process, which will include public consultation next year, and will be included in discussions with developers looking to bring development forward.”

The Greenway Group is now encouraging supporters to respond to the latest consultation document, which closes on January 7, 2019.

See: – and respond to the Technical Evidence Work Consultation.

For more information, contact: