If you live in West Sussex you will be aware that the county has so far managed to get into this new century without following the the rest of the counties of Great Britain that have, to varying degrees, put cycling on their agendas. Whilst the country may lag behind European states by at least 50 years some counties have realised that promoting car use cannot continue and have started to create enviroments in their towns more suited to people rather than vehicules.
Like him or loath him our Prime Miniters is influenced by the city in which he lives and he is also a cyclist. For the first time we have a government promoting cycling and walking with the knowledge that it can only become the norm if the public find it safe to cycle and walk. This is wonderful news for the country and the benefits to our health, reduced costs to the NHS, reduction of obesity, mental health, the environment, climate, air quality, traffic volumes, to town centres and child journeys to school cannot be over estimated.
Of course I have written here about the country as a whole and you will know from your UK holidays and news reports from various cities that it is actually happening nation wide. However, here, in West Sussex, we are in the only county that has so far always managed to put cycling and walking last on the agenda and first to be removed. Its councillors, your councillors, have shown incredible skill it always prioritising the car over walking and cycling. It has been quiet remarkable how successfully they have scuppered so many plans genuinely beneficial to the community despite the incredible efforts of the Count Council Officers (planners and engineers) and the handfull of county councillors who share a vision for a county that is both safer, healthier and nicer to live in.
Of course we want to be able to drive too. I am not saying that we stop driving but we do need to be able to ride too. As an example, Littlehampton or Arundel are local tourist hot spots (just down the road). So why is it that here in West Sussex, there is no dedicated cycle route to get to them frm Worthing. If you have a young family, cycling to Swanbourne Park should be the norm as it would be an any other European country. But not in West Sussex!
You can help change West Sussex’s promtion of driving by writing to your county councillor. If you have young children why not ask you local county councillor why it is not safe for your child, or all children, to cycle to school in Worthing? Did you know that West Sussex County Councillor’s have accepted that children (and adults) have to use the pavement in Worthing as the roads are so dangerous. You can find your county councillors contact details here Find your councillor.
Please sign this petition More Cycle Lanes in Worthing asnd Shoreham.