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Concern over lack of consultation on cycleway

Created on 25/02/2018 @ 09:34
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Work is to start on a new cycleway on a Newtown housing estate, but councillors are unhappy at the lack of consultation over the plans.

Work will start on the cycleway at Garthowen on Monday, with roadworks set up.

It is part of a wider network planned for Newtown to improve cycling and pedestrian access to the town centre alongside work on the new bypass.

Funding was awarded to the county council as part of an integrated transport programme.

But several town councillors have raised concerns about the lack of consultation with local residents and on Friday met with Powys County Council officials to discuss the scheme.

Councillors Susan Hill, Richard Edwards and Mike Jones also met with representatives from Griffiths  to ask questions.

"We were unhappy about the lack of notice of the works and lack of resident consultation, although a leaflet drop to affected properties had taken place at the end of January," said Cllr Hill.

"Only two local residents had responded to the letters, one being the local ward councillor who lives on the route and called for the meeting. However, no plans were shown in the letter and residents will not have known how they may be affected."

Cllr Hill added: "It is phase one of an initiative to link up with the by-pass so that people from the south of the town can walk and cycle away from the road itself to their work or to school and the town itself.

"It will improve air quality in reducing traffic, and also improve health and fitness for walkers ands cyclists. There will be a new raised shared use  zebra crossing on Plantation Lane to link the new cycleway with the one that goes around the high school. We will be the first town in the Mid Wales area to be given on of these crossings."

Cllr Hill said they were not against the cycleway as it will bring benefits to those wanting to cycle to work or home. But they were concerned at the lack of consultation.

They said a roundabout on the Garthowen housing estate could be removed as part of the plans, with some car parking placed in the area and urged residents to have their say on the matter.

"It will mean the loss of some mature trees but we have been promised that new ones will be planted to replace them. Some car parking spaces will be lost, however, although the plans include providing new ones on the site of the current roundabout.

"This is the one area in which residents can have an influence. We asked that residents are allowed to decide the fate of the roundabout and that PCC go with the majority view on whether it is removed and extra parking provided, whether it should be left as it is, or have a mixture of planting and parking on the space.

"We only have one week to respond, however, as the whole project will only take six weeks and they are planning to start on Monday."

Local resident has Kelly Leah agreed to knock on doors to take a poll and Cllr Hill said she will liaise with Powys County Council about the majority view. 

Cllr Hill said: "We were very disappointed at the lack of public consultation on this but it was explained that the funding agreement was not in place until very recently.

"A Powys County Council spokesman did say that they were keen to work with the town council in future to make sure that residents are better informed and able to have a say on developments, which we welcome. Let's make the most of this opportunity to have a say on the fate of the roundabout." 

Residents can contact Kelly Leah to take part in her poll, or email South ward town councillors Susan Hill, Richard Edwards and Joy Jones at,  or

Photo: The Garthowen roundabout (photo by Cllr Susan Hill)

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