Chichester to Emsworth cycle route backed by MP

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Wheels could be put in motion for an upgraded cycle route along the A259 after backing from MP Andrew Tyrie.

Residents packed out County Hall in Chichester to discuss ‘Chemroute’, a cycle path which would run along the A259 from Chichester to Emsworth, separating cyclists and traffic with a raised barrier.

An example of a cyclist-friendly roundabout design which could be used at Bosham roundabout

An example of a cyclist-friendly roundabout design which could be used at Bosham roundabout

Council officials are now ‘giving consideration’ to the project.

Chichester MP Andrew Tyrie told the Observer: “The more we can do to encourage cycling the better, and the more on safe dedicated paths, too.

“I have been pressing the case for better cycle connections from the Manhood Peninsula for years.”

Also at the meeting was leader of West Sussex County Council, Louise Goldsmith.

“I think any scheme that is generated by the interested community is always worth looking at,” she said.

Secretary of the Chemroute Action Group Rupert Emerson told Tuesday’s meeting: “The A259 is very wide so there is an opportunity to put a cycle track all the way along it.

“We want it to feel like a village road rather than Silverstone.”

Rupert said funding could come from the Local Enterprise Partnership and central government, adding: “I don’t see any reason why the Community Infrastructure Levy from the White House Farm development couldn’t go towards this.

“There is no reason why this shouldn’t seriously be on the agenda next year.”

Laurence Foord, 44, commutes from Southsea to Chichester by bicycle twice a week.

“There is not a lot of time difference between cycling and driving when you consider traffic and parking - but in certain areas there is no separation between cyclists and traffic,” said Mr Foord.

“In Nutbourne and Chidham the road in places is treacherous.”

Chairman of Chidham and Hambrook Parish Council, Cliff Archer said an improved cycle route from Chidham to Nutbourne east was a priority for his council, while Ruth Keeley from Fishbourne Parish Council said councillors were meeting the Chemroute group on December 4 to discuss the scheme.