Construction has commenced on a LEP-funded project set to improve a popular off-road walking and cycling link that provides connectivity between Stoke-on-Trent and Biddulph.
A 10-week construction programme, funded by Stoke-on-Trent & Staffordshire LEP via the Government’s Getting Building Fund, will improve the quality and condition of the path in a 1.2km section of Biddulph Valley Way, which forms part of the National Cycle Network Route 55.
Walkers and cyclists are set to experience the benefits of investment in the depth and quality of the path along the section between Bull Lane and Brown Lees Road, which is currently uneven and worn in sections, as well as suffering from poor drainage following heavy rain.
With detailed design and legal procedures complete, construction work started on 9 December 2021 and is scheduled to finish during the week ending 25 February 2022. The route will remain closed for the duration of the works, but an alternative route will be available along Bull Lane and Tunstall Road to try and limit inconvenience to the public.
Alun Rogers, chair of Stoke-on-Trent & Staffordshire LEP, said:
This project, which forms part of the wider Local Sustainable Transport Programme, is a great example of LEP investment helping to improve connectivity for people across Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire and help create communities where people want to live, work and visit
Through the Government’s Getting Building Fund, we’ve been able to invest in the infrastructure that will most benefit our own local area, like the new pathway currently under construction. Biddulph Valley Way is a popular route with local walkers and cyclists that use the path for leisure and commuting purposes. With the rise in hybrid working and more people enjoying spending time in their local communities, it is very timely that we have been able to fund and facilitate these improvements and champion more sustainable modes of travel.”
Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport David Williams said:
We’re pleased to be supporting the LEP in the delivery of this scheme which will vastly improve this section of the Biddulph Valley Way which is well used. We hope through these improvements more people will be encouraged to enjoy it and that it will become an even more established sustainable transport route.”
Infrastructure services and engineering company Amey is contracted to work on the project, and Staffordshire County Council is working in partnership with Staffordshire Moorlands District Council; Stoke-on-Trent City Council; The Coal Authority; Sustrans; and Stoke-on-Trent & Staffordshire LEP to help deliver the improvements to this important route.