Whatever happened to the world class cycle tracks in Harlow?

News / Sat 25th Mar 2023 at 07:09am

HARLOW Alliance Party member Alan Leverett asked the following question to the Conservative-run Harlow Council Cabinet on Thursday night.

The question referred to bold announcements by the former portfolio holder councillor Dan Swords last year.

  1. Mr Leverett: I asked a question of Cllr Swords in December 2021 concerning the problem of potholes and poor maintenance of cycle tracks that are in the ownership of Harlow Council. I was told at the time to watch this space! Fifteen months has now elapsed during which time I have been watching this space and it seems evident that little if any work has been carried out to Harlow Council’s cycle tracks.If work has been carried out, can you please provide me with a list of sites attended to and how much work has been done in each location?
  2. Reply from Councillor Nicky Purse (Portfolio Holder for Environment):Thank you for your question Mr Leverett.

The town’s cycle tracks are a key network used by residents to get around the town. Maintaining them, in particular the parts of the network under the responsibility of the council, is a matter this administration takes seriously. Approximately 10 per cent of the network is under Harlow Council responsibility.

I share your desire to see more progress being made. To take this work forward on a more proactive basis, I’ve asked officers to progress two key actions: firstly review the core capital budget for a phased scheme of repairs to be factored into future plans over multiple years; and secondly prepare an investment case that can be presented to access new funding streams.

The council is aware that more funding for pothole repairs has been announced by the Government as part of the Spring Budget. A further £200 million has been allocated to the Potholes Fund by central government to help local communities tackle the problem. The council’s ambition is to put forward a case to ECC secure additional funding to help maintain the network, but this is dependent on the criteria in place to be able to do so.

There remains in place a commitment to the principle that a well maintained cycle track network is a priority. The council has advanced its thinking about how to achieve that.

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6 Comments for Whatever happened to the world class cycle tracks in Harlow?:

Edward Vine
2023-03-25 09:30:58

This simply shows what an absolute crash the system of local, county and national government continues to be. Whilst the system remains the national government swings crudely all over the place never subject to party fractional infighting, different ideologies, pressure groups within and lobbying, never really tackling an issue before it changes direction and the various layers of government bat responsibilities for failures between them. Result: just look around services and transport in a mess and property developers making a mint.

Peter Henegan
2023-03-25 19:42:43

What happened to the world class cycle tracks-simple, they have been allowed to deteriorate by third world councils. Cllr Purse uses the word "priority' but nothing else suggests that he acually sees it that way. in my view ECC sees Harlow as a poor town that they can p-ss on to their hearts content. It would be interesting to know which Cycle tracks Harlow is responsible for. And dont forget the cycle track along Old London Road was interrupted without any provision for crossing the new link road to A414

Edward Huxtable
2023-03-26 08:26:19

Harlow Council. ON YOUR BIKE.

John Curry
2023-03-26 14:02:44

As an ardent cyclist who uses the Harlow Cycle Network a lot can I suggest that instead listening to the familiar obfuscation of councillors, we get on our bikes and see for yourselves. This is an open invitation councillors, council officers and all residents of our town to get on our bikes during National Bike Week and participate in what I am calling The Green Flag Ride. This event would visit all three of our famed Green Flag sites on a date during NBW. There enough experienced ride leaders in Harlow to make it a safe event for all. Refreshments can be found at all 3 sites, and a route devised that would take in some the best, and worst of the network. This might be catalyst for real action. The action needed to bring our network up to scratch and for councils get work done and not blame each other for inaction.

Jennifer Steadman
2023-03-26 19:12:43

I bought myself an electric trike last year & started out on these 'world class cycles' around town. I soon discovered that all was not as well as I'd expected them to be! I've been documenting some of the pot holes, craters, uplifted surfaces & the damage to them as I ride around & am shocked at the quite obvious dangerous state of them. I'd be interested to know how many accidents, punctures or incidents have been reported?

2023-03-27 09:32:57

The majority of cycle routes around Harlow are the responsibility of Essex CC with just a few where HDC is responsible. Does this give the two authorities a good chance to blame each other so that little gets done to maintain them?

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