Campaign Theme

Off-Road Access

Introduction

Off road
Off road
Rights of way in the countryside, forest trails, paths along the coast, seafronts, canal towpaths, the riverside, former railway lines and routes through parks or other green spaces, can all offer an attractive, motor-traffic free environment for cycling either for recreation or a utility journey.

Towpaths, promenades and parks can form valuable routes and links, offering a useful complement to the road network for cyclists. Coastal paths and forest trails are also excellent settings for cycling, from extreme mountain biking, to days out for the family. Many off-road opportunities like this are already open, but it would be good to see far more of them.

Towpaths, promenades and parks can form valuable routes and links, offering a useful complement to the road network for cyclists. Coastal paths and forest trails are also excellent settings for cycling, from extreme mountain biking, to days out for the family. Many off-road opportunities like this are already open, but it would be good to see far more of them.

Likewise, only 30% of the Public Rights of Way network in England and Wales is available for cycling. It is often fragmented and incoherent, and the legal status of some paths seems arbitrary (some footpaths, for example, are better for cycling than some bridleways).

Complex processes usually apply whenever there are proposals to make a path legally available to cyclists, but in Scotland the Land Reform Act 2003 gives the public, including cyclists, lawful access to most land and inland water, provided they obey an access code. Adopting this approach for the rest of the UK would be a welcome boost for cycling.

To make sure that they are well used and usable for cycling, all routes away from the roads should be well signed  and publicised. Good maintenance (e.g. clearing obstructions) is also important.

 

 

Latest News

Dominic is the prize guy in our off-road survey
York's Dominic Littler with iPad Mini after winning off-road survey prize draw
York’s Dominic Littler has won an iPad Mini after taking part in the first national survey of off-road cycling activity in England and Wales.
Rights of Way not fit for purpose finds Off-Road cycling survey
Photo: Flickr CC shirokazan
Cycling UK and Open MTB today (Friday 17 November) issued the preliminary results from their Off-Road survey which found 74% of the participants consider the current rights of way unsuitable for off-...
Jeremy on the right trail to earn Best Campaign accolade
Caroline Russell with Jeremy Gartside
Jeremy Gartside has metaphorically moved heaven and literally moved earth to make the North Dorset Trailway a more attractive and usable cycle route in his community.
“Copy Scotland” to benefit rural economy
No cycling signin royal park
Cycling UK today reiterated its call for increased access and rights of way to the English countryside. The national cycling charity, in its response to the House of Commons Environment, Food and...
 
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