Tuesday, 29 March 2016

White Peak Loop

The White Peak Loop is an ambitious project by Derbyshire County Council and The Pedal Peak Project to install a lengthy multi-user path around the Peak District of Derbyshire, joining with some existing paths, notably the Monsal and High Peak Trails.

It is currently under construction at several places and here we look at the section running Northwards from Matlock towards Rowsley, which generally follows the route of the Peak Rail Heritage Railway and the River Derwent. 

If travelling to Matlock by train from Derby, which takes only 35 minutes, costing a little over £4 with a Railcard, you need to ride a short distance from the station along the shared path Northwards alongside the A6 road signed Bakewell and Rowsley.

 Follow the Bakewell Road out of Matlock, turning left at the roundabout ahead.

                                          Watch out for these signs.

This is the short access path which leads to the first railway crossing at Darley Dale. Turn right after crossing the line.

 Yet to have it's top surface laid, the path runs alongside the Peak Rail track.

Although it has been necessary to fell a few trees, some magnificent specimens remain 

 And the scenery to the West side of the path makes this a top class cycle ride.

From Harrison Way Northwood, this path through the woods will eventually take us right through to Rowsley.

The current termination of the path is here at Old Station Close, Rowsley.

A section of the (almost) finished path between Churchtown and Harrison Way Northwood can be seen on YouTube HERE

Monday, 21 March 2016

Pastures Hill, Derby

Pastures Hill was once, prior to the building of the nearby A38 trunk road, the main road Southwards out of Derby, towards Burton-upon-Trent. Subsequently it was subject to a 40mph speed limit, but was a dangerous place for cyclists, having a series of bollards intermittently along the road and no cycle lanes. Each bollard presented a narrowing of the available lane and cyclists were exposed to danger from 40mph traffic overtaking them at these points.

At last, the road has had a makeover, and is now a much safer place for all road users.
The bollards have been swept away, the speed limit reduced from 40mph to 30mph, and a 1 meter cycle lane added to the West (uphill) side.

At the top of the hill the road meets the roundabout junction of  Hillsway and Chain Lane, where the cycle lane currently ends, and we hope that future plans for changes here will continue the good work on towards Derby City via Burton Road.  Currently there are no cycle lanes on Burton Road.

Well done Derby City Council. So far, so good.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Infinity Park

Infinity Park, currently under construction on the South side of Derby, between Sinfin and Chellaston, is a 100 acre technology business park which will attract many high tech firms to the area, providing around 8,000 jobs.
One essential requirement will be good transport links, especially by road, and the site is less than a mile from the A50 trunk road which runs between the M1 and the M6.  Also for the benefit of local people who will work in the park, good cycle access is essential. Both these requirements are to be met by the new road running from Wilmore Road at Sinfin to the Bonnie Prince roundabout on the A50 between Chellaston and Swarkestone.
Two of our local cycle routes are already nearby.  NCN Route 6 runs all the way from Derby City and is almost entirely off road, whilst NCN 66, the Derby Orbital Route links to Sinfin, Littleover and Mickleover.
The new spinal road, Infinity Park Way, will cross both of the existing cycle paths and good provision is being made with Toucan crossings, and the whole 1.25 mile length has good off road paths on both sides.
Much work yet to be done, but you can see that good provision is being made for cyclists.

                                                     Generous width cycle paths.

                                              Good run-off ramps ahead of roundabouts.

                                                   Good signing already in place.

                                                     Plenty of room for cyclists.

                                         This is the Innovation Centre building.

                            Alongside the existing pylons, lots of saplings have been planted.

                                                            Another Toucan crossing.

                       Junction with Wilmore Road.  Rolls-Royce aero engine test beds ahead.                                                                                                                                                    
Click  HERE to view YouTube video of whole length of new road as at February 29th 2016.
It will look rather different in the months to come.                                                                                                                 


Sinfin Moor Lane

Sinfin Moor Lane is a traffic free lane which is a part of  NCN Route 66, the Derby Orbital Route, and is a good link for cyclists between Sinfin and Chellaston, where it joins NCN Route 6 running between Derby and Swarkestone via Shelton Lock.

                            From the South end of Sinfin Lane go straight on at this roundabout.

                                        Sinfin Moor Lane goes straight on at this right hand bend.

                                                 Pass the Recreation Ground on the left.

                                                            And Woodbine Cottage

                              This coded barrier prevents access by unauthorised motor vehicles.

                                A hard tarmac surface runs as far as Lea Farm, but it is rather bumpy.

                             The tarmac surface goes only as far as the entrance to Lea Farm.

          A pretty poor surface between Lea Farm and the junction with NCN Route 6 at Chellaston.
To the left here we can see the Rolls-Royce aero engine test beds and to the right are the Trent and Mersey Canal and the River Trent.
 Ahead we now see the new Infinity Park Way under construction. This crosses Sinfin Moor Lane joining Wilmore Road to Holmleigh Way at Chellaston.  When the new road is opened there will be a Toucan crossing here. It will be necessary since the new road will link Infinity Park with the A50 trunk road at the Bonnie Prince roundabout and is likely to carry much motor traffic.
There will be another Toucan crossing nearer to Swarkestone Lock where the new road crosses NCN Route 6.

 Soon we  can see the junction with NCN Route 6 where we can turn right for Swarkestone Lock on the Trent and Mersey Canal, or left for Shelton Lock and Derby.

As we cross the new road we can see much of it's 1.25 mile length and the excellent cycle paths on both sides. This view is looking towards Chellaston where the road meets NCN Route 6 at the narrow bridge over the stream.  See below.