Bridgwater junction to receive upgrade for cyclists and pedestrians

Cyclists and councillors celebrate the launch of The Bridgwater Way

Cyclists and councillors celebrate the launch of The Bridgwater Way

First published in News
Last updated
Bridgwater Mercury: Photograph of the Author by

A KEY junction in Bridgwater is set for an upgrade to include better facilities for cyclists and pedestrians, and new energy-efficient lighting.

The improvements are planned by Somerset County Council at the junction of Broadway, Penel Orlieu, North Street and West Street.

As reported, Mercury readers have called for more cycling provision in Bridgwater to better increase safety for both cyclists and pedestrians.

The alterations include the provision of new and upgraded pedestrian and cycle facilities. The new traffic light system will work on an extra low voltage supply (ELV) and use LED lights to reduce the Council’s carbon footprint and help save money.

Councillor Harvey Siggs, Somerset County Council Cabinet member for Highways, said: “We’re committed to upgrading our network to use energy efficient lighting wherever possible, and it’s important that we do this proactively by replacing ageing systems before they start breaking down.

“This is a key junction in one of our busiest towns and I’m pleased we have also been able to tie in some further improvements to make it safer for cyclists and pedestrians.

“Please bear with us while the work takes place. We have taken steps to minimise disruption, but some is inevitable due to the location.”

Cllr Leigh Redman, Somerset County Council member for Bridgwater South, said: “I hope County uses this opportunity to find ways to make certain that the technology used ensures smooth flow and is intelligent in its operation.

“With the Hinkley Point C traffic that will be using this important intersection, it would be remiss not to ensure this opportunity gives Bridgwater residents and road users, as well as the indicated cyclists, the very best system.

“As the Cabinet member rightly points out 'this is one of the busiest junctions in Bridgwater'; I only hope that the most intelligent system is used to maximise the opportunity this upgrade offers.

“Bridgwater residents and road users are going to suffer the HPC juggernauts and coaches for some ten years so let's get this right first time and put the very best system in place.”

The work is due to start in early June and will take around 12 to 14 weeks to complete. Wherever possible the majority of works within the carriageway itself will take place on Sundays or during off-peak hours.

For more information about cycling in the town, visit www.thebridgwaterway.co.uk

Comments (24)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

3:43pm Thu 15 May 14

twinkles says...

Ok, a step in the right direction. Well done.

Now, how about a further step, FROM the town and all it's houses, ALONG the busiest road in the town, TO the place that employs the most people, who travel by bicycle.

A38 Bristol Road, between Taunton Road and Express Park.

NEEDS A CYCLE LANE.
NEEDS A CYCLE LANE.
NEEDS A CYCLE LANE.

Repeated for the benefit of the hard-of-thinking planners. Thanks very much.
Ok, a step in the right direction. Well done. Now, how about a further step, FROM the town and all it's houses, ALONG the busiest road in the town, TO the place that employs the most people, who travel by bicycle. A38 Bristol Road, between Taunton Road and Express Park. NEEDS A CYCLE LANE. NEEDS A CYCLE LANE. NEEDS A CYCLE LANE. Repeated for the benefit of the hard-of-thinking planners. Thanks very much. twinkles
  • Score: 11

5:13pm Thu 15 May 14

RustyKnight says...

It's all very well putting cycle paths at junctions but what about everywhere else?

There are too many pathetic attempts at providing safety for cyclists in Bridgwater, what use is a cycle path when it's just over the length of a bike?

How about building cycle paths from the villages into town too. I know several people who have said they would like a cycle path from Cannington to Bridgwater!, and if EDF get their way the amount of traffic in the area is only going to get worse!!
It's all very well putting cycle paths at junctions but what about everywhere else? There are too many pathetic attempts at providing safety for cyclists in Bridgwater, what use is a cycle path when it's just over the length of a bike? How about building cycle paths from the villages into town too. I know several people who have said they would like a cycle path from Cannington to Bridgwater!, and if EDF get their way the amount of traffic in the area is only going to get worse!! RustyKnight
  • Score: 11

5:41pm Thu 15 May 14

jools62 says...

Fair play twinkles, bristol rd is a death trap, it badly needs cycle lanes before somebody is killed
Fair play twinkles, bristol rd is a death trap, it badly needs cycle lanes before somebody is killed jools62
  • Score: 9

6:33pm Thu 15 May 14

twinkles says...

Jools, several cyclists have already been involved in serious accidents on this stretch. There has been a death within the last 5 years outside crypton.

Still nothing has been done.
Jools, several cyclists have already been involved in serious accidents on this stretch. There has been a death within the last 5 years outside crypton. Still nothing has been done. twinkles
  • Score: 7

10:09pm Thu 15 May 14

swjoduk says...

Agreed Bristol Rd needs something even a shared footpath/cycleway.

Same goes for A372 from Westonzoyland into town but especially Westonzoyland Rd over the railway and a proper cycleway on St Johns Street not a few short stretches.

Bath Road isn't pleasant either and its a good shout to improve things between Cannington and town especially with EDF coming on board.
Agreed Bristol Rd needs something even a shared footpath/cycleway. Same goes for A372 from Westonzoyland into town but especially Westonzoyland Rd over the railway and a proper cycleway on St Johns Street not a few short stretches. Bath Road isn't pleasant either and its a good shout to improve things between Cannington and town especially with EDF coming on board. swjoduk
  • Score: 7

8:00am Sat 17 May 14

jools62 says...

As cyclists we need to keep moaning, keep whinging, keep talking untill the powers that be " lol " listen, motorists dont give a dam about cyclists, our beloved goverment " even more lol " wants this country to get fit, but dont give a dam if it costs lives,
As cyclists we need to keep moaning, keep whinging, keep talking untill the powers that be " lol " listen, motorists dont give a dam about cyclists, our beloved goverment " even more lol " wants this country to get fit, but dont give a dam if it costs lives, jools62
  • Score: 1

6:35pm Sun 18 May 14

MBR Extreme says...

I cannot believe that a cycle lane has not been put in between Taunton road and st John street , the pavement is easily wide enough and everyone cycles on there anyway.
I cannot believe that a cycle lane has not been put in between Taunton road and st John street , the pavement is easily wide enough and everyone cycles on there anyway. MBR Extreme
  • Score: 3

10:15am Mon 19 May 14

Anonymous Me says...

It is not cycle paths that are needed, but better drivers and people on bikes to behave themselves (I can't bring myself to call these irresponsible bike abusers cyclists, they are poles apart from the true courteous law abiding riders and as such shouldn't be pigeon-holed into the same group).
I commute by bike everyday along Bristol Road, the vast majority of drivers are respectful and give you enough room, but there will always be the odd arrogant idiot who drives aggressively, just as there are idiots on bikes and walking the pavements too.
It is not cycle paths that are needed, but better drivers and people on bikes to behave themselves (I can't bring myself to call these irresponsible bike abusers cyclists, they are poles apart from the true courteous law abiding riders and as such shouldn't be pigeon-holed into the same group). I commute by bike everyday along Bristol Road, the vast majority of drivers are respectful and give you enough room, but there will always be the odd arrogant idiot who drives aggressively, just as there are idiots on bikes and walking the pavements too. Anonymous Me
  • Score: 6

10:58am Mon 19 May 14

twinkles says...

Anonymous Me - I agree with your overall statement, but to say Bristol Road doesn't need a cycle path is doolally!

It's a 30mph zone with a short section of 40mph when going towards Express park. Try and cross the road just before the 40mph sign and you see just how fast people come out of Bridgwater (ok, I agree, there's motivation to get out!). Seriously though, cars, trucks, busses all seem to be doing well over the speed limit there and the section between Matalan and Express Park is very narrow.

I think someone needs to form a Bike User Group (Bridgwater BUG perhaps?) and gather names to petition for someone at the Council to listen to reason.
Anonymous Me - I agree with your overall statement, but to say Bristol Road doesn't need a cycle path is doolally! It's a 30mph zone with a short section of 40mph when going towards Express park. Try and cross the road just before the 40mph sign and you see just how fast people come out of Bridgwater (ok, I agree, there's motivation to get out!). Seriously though, cars, trucks, busses all seem to be doing well over the speed limit there and the section between Matalan and Express Park is very narrow. I think someone needs to form a Bike User Group (Bridgwater BUG perhaps?) and gather names to petition for someone at the Council to listen to reason. twinkles
  • Score: 4

2:49pm Mon 19 May 14

Anonymous Me says...

twinkles wrote:
Anonymous Me - I agree with your overall statement, but to say Bristol Road doesn't need a cycle path is doolally!

It's a 30mph zone with a short section of 40mph when going towards Express park. Try and cross the road just before the 40mph sign and you see just how fast people come out of Bridgwater (ok, I agree, there's motivation to get out!). Seriously though, cars, trucks, busses all seem to be doing well over the speed limit there and the section between Matalan and Express Park is very narrow.

I think someone needs to form a Bike User Group (Bridgwater BUG perhaps?) and gather names to petition for someone at the Council to listen to reason.
As you point out, the section from the Wylds Rd junction up to the Express Park roundabout is indeed narrow, but how will you be able to fit a cycle-lane in, as the footpath is also not very wide, especially at the Bus-stop and it would be impossible to cross the road if the lane was only on one side only.
Segregation in my view is not the answer, cyclists who rely on them panic and don't know how to interact with other traffic when they are forced to use the road (which in turn leads them to illegally riding on the pavement because of the over-hyped dangers!), and likewise drivers also lose the expertise required in sharing the road with slower moving vulnerable road users.
I'm fortunate in being able to cycle between 20 - 30 mph, and even at speeds approaching the 30 limit you still get cars overtaking you, even when the traffic is queuing only yards away.
Statistically pedestrians are more likely to get killed by cars than cyclists!
[quote][p][bold]twinkles[/bold] wrote: Anonymous Me - I agree with your overall statement, but to say Bristol Road doesn't need a cycle path is doolally! It's a 30mph zone with a short section of 40mph when going towards Express park. Try and cross the road just before the 40mph sign and you see just how fast people come out of Bridgwater (ok, I agree, there's motivation to get out!). Seriously though, cars, trucks, busses all seem to be doing well over the speed limit there and the section between Matalan and Express Park is very narrow. I think someone needs to form a Bike User Group (Bridgwater BUG perhaps?) and gather names to petition for someone at the Council to listen to reason.[/p][/quote]As you point out, the section from the Wylds Rd junction up to the Express Park roundabout is indeed narrow, but how will you be able to fit a cycle-lane in, as the footpath is also not very wide, especially at the Bus-stop and it would be impossible to cross the road if the lane was only on one side only. Segregation in my view is not the answer, cyclists who rely on them panic and don't know how to interact with other traffic when they are forced to use the road (which in turn leads them to illegally riding on the pavement because of the over-hyped dangers!), and likewise drivers also lose the expertise required in sharing the road with slower moving vulnerable road users. I'm fortunate in being able to cycle between 20 - 30 mph, and even at speeds approaching the 30 limit you still get cars overtaking you, even when the traffic is queuing only yards away. Statistically pedestrians are more likely to get killed by cars than cyclists! Anonymous Me
  • Score: 3

4:30pm Mon 19 May 14

twinkles says...

...Only slightly: http://cyclinguphill
.com/safe-cycling-st
ats-cycle-casualties
/

I'm more comfortable tonking on at top whack down the road too. But on the days when it's raining, there's fog, or at night, I seriously wonder whether I'm going to be crashed into from behind.

Segregation is necessary because the standard of driving in this country is so poor. The problem seems like it's because we're in a nanny state where all the decision making is taken away from the driver, with road signs and paint of various colours telling you what to do and when to do it. When something outside of this comes along, people just assume 'if nothing is said go right ahead'. How close have you been passed by a vehicle along there?

It's in the highway code that a cyclist *can* occupy a whole lane of a carriageway. Indeed I move to a primary position in narrow sections of Bristol Road, and only move back in where the road widens. At 25mph (No strava KOM for me!) this is acceptable. At less speed I can see this being in itself 'dangerous'. And the inverted commas are to indicate the litigious, lawers-dragging-out-
a-court-case scenario where a cycliest could be posthumously blamed for the speed which they were travelling at the time the car hit from behind.

Educate drivers, yes. But don't for a moment think it's going to save a life, we're past that now.
...Only slightly: http://cyclinguphill .com/safe-cycling-st ats-cycle-casualties / I'm more comfortable tonking on at top whack down the road too. But on the days when it's raining, there's fog, or at night, I seriously wonder whether I'm going to be crashed into from behind. Segregation is necessary because the standard of driving in this country is so poor. The problem seems like it's because we're in a nanny state where all the decision making is taken away from the driver, with road signs and paint of various colours telling you what to do and when to do it. When something outside of this comes along, people just assume 'if nothing is said go right ahead'. How close have you been passed by a vehicle along there? It's in the highway code that a cyclist *can* occupy a whole lane of a carriageway. Indeed I move to a primary position in narrow sections of Bristol Road, and only move back in where the road widens. At 25mph (No strava KOM for me!) this is acceptable. At less speed I can see this being in itself 'dangerous'. And the inverted commas are to indicate the litigious, lawers-dragging-out- a-court-case scenario where a cycliest could be posthumously blamed for the speed which they were travelling at the time the car hit from behind. Educate drivers, yes. But don't for a moment think it's going to save a life, we're past that now. twinkles
  • Score: 3

5:10pm Mon 19 May 14

jools62 says...

Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks
Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks jools62
  • Score: -4

1:10am Tue 20 May 14

Three Pots Derek says...

Anonymous Me wrote:
It is not cycle paths that are needed, but better drivers and people on bikes to behave themselves (I can't bring myself to call these irresponsible bike abusers cyclists, they are poles apart from the true courteous law abiding riders and as such shouldn't be pigeon-holed into the same group).
I commute by bike everyday along Bristol Road, the vast majority of drivers are respectful and give you enough room, but there will always be the odd arrogant idiot who drives aggressively, just as there are idiots on bikes and walking the pavements too.
Well said the majority of drivers are respectful but you do sometimes get a group of cyclists who seem to think they can take up all the width of the road, (where there isn't a cycle path of course.
[quote][p][bold]Anonymous Me[/bold] wrote: It is not cycle paths that are needed, but better drivers and people on bikes to behave themselves (I can't bring myself to call these irresponsible bike abusers cyclists, they are poles apart from the true courteous law abiding riders and as such shouldn't be pigeon-holed into the same group). I commute by bike everyday along Bristol Road, the vast majority of drivers are respectful and give you enough room, but there will always be the odd arrogant idiot who drives aggressively, just as there are idiots on bikes and walking the pavements too.[/p][/quote]Well said the majority of drivers are respectful but you do sometimes get a group of cyclists who seem to think they can take up all the width of the road, (where there isn't a cycle path of course. Three Pots Derek
  • Score: 3

9:02am Tue 20 May 14

twinkles says...

Three Pots Derek - have a read around this site, it's informative without shoving it in your face: http://www.bloodycyc
list.com/the-highway
-code/

Some cyclists are antagonistic, but generally group riders are aware of their actions and their position as ambassadors.
Three Pots Derek - have a read around this site, it's informative without shoving it in your face: http://www.bloodycyc list.com/the-highway -code/ Some cyclists are antagonistic, but generally group riders are aware of their actions and their position as ambassadors. twinkles
  • Score: 2

10:39am Tue 20 May 14

Anonymous Me says...

jools62 wrote:
Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks
The perceived danger is greater than the actual risk, and by cycling on the footpath you are not only putting pedestrians (including children) in danger but advertising loudly to motorists how all cyclists break the law all the time and don't deserve to be treated with respect!
Yes you have to be constantly alert and know how to mix with traffic, hugging the kerb and weaving about looking scared is not how you cycle safely, nor is bombing past walkers expecting them to give way to you or whizzing around blind corners on narrow paths.
[quote][p][bold]jools62[/bold] wrote: Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks[/p][/quote]The perceived danger is greater than the actual risk, and by cycling on the footpath you are not only putting pedestrians (including children) in danger but advertising loudly to motorists how all cyclists break the law all the time and don't deserve to be treated with respect! Yes you have to be constantly alert and know how to mix with traffic, hugging the kerb and weaving about looking scared is not how you cycle safely, nor is bombing past walkers expecting them to give way to you or whizzing around blind corners on narrow paths. Anonymous Me
  • Score: 2

10:40am Tue 20 May 14

glowbuzzer says...

Can anyone please tell me where I can find out more (any) information about the "new and upgraded pedestrian and cycle facilities". I can't find anything on the Bridgwater Way or SCC websites.
Can anyone please tell me where I can find out more (any) information about the "new and upgraded pedestrian and cycle facilities". I can't find anything on the Bridgwater Way or SCC websites. glowbuzzer
  • Score: 0

8:38pm Tue 20 May 14

BaldCarl2 says...

Complete waste of money. Should be upgrading roads for the benefit of those who use them the most - motorists
Complete waste of money. Should be upgrading roads for the benefit of those who use them the most - motorists BaldCarl2
  • Score: -1

9:08pm Tue 20 May 14

jools62 says...

Baldcarl, crawl back under the stone you were born under
Baldcarl, crawl back under the stone you were born under jools62
  • Score: 2

9:09pm Tue 20 May 14

??givemeabreak!! says...

Anonymous Me wrote:
jools62 wrote:
Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks
The perceived danger is greater than the actual risk, and by cycling on the footpath you are not only putting pedestrians (including children) in danger but advertising loudly to motorists how all cyclists break the law all the time and don't deserve to be treated with respect!
Yes you have to be constantly alert and know how to mix with traffic, hugging the kerb and weaving about looking scared is not how you cycle safely, nor is bombing past walkers expecting them to give way to you or whizzing around blind corners on narrow paths.
Please give a thought to people with hearing issues they do not as you think HEAR you coming. It is terrifying to suddenly have a cyclist in your face and not in a good way there is far too much intolerance on both sides about this issue and perhaps more cyclists should actually read the Highway Code as well as car drivers
[quote][p][bold]Anonymous Me[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]jools62[/bold] wrote: Anonymous me, sorry but your a wally, overhyped danger is it, motorists dont give a fig about cyclists, i'd rather take my chance on the pavement thanks[/p][/quote]The perceived danger is greater than the actual risk, and by cycling on the footpath you are not only putting pedestrians (including children) in danger but advertising loudly to motorists how all cyclists break the law all the time and don't deserve to be treated with respect! Yes you have to be constantly alert and know how to mix with traffic, hugging the kerb and weaving about looking scared is not how you cycle safely, nor is bombing past walkers expecting them to give way to you or whizzing around blind corners on narrow paths.[/p][/quote]Please give a thought to people with hearing issues they do not as you think HEAR you coming. It is terrifying to suddenly have a cyclist in your face and not in a good way there is far too much intolerance on both sides about this issue and perhaps more cyclists should actually read the Highway Code as well as car drivers ??givemeabreak!!
  • Score: 3

9:36am Wed 21 May 14

Anonymous Me says...

jools62 wrote:
Baldcarl, crawl back under the stone you were born under
jools62 - don't get so wound up over a comment that is obviously meant to cause a reaction!
Also do you always have to resort to an insulting or derogatory reply, just because you don't agree?
Adding an alternative opinion is much more helpful to the debate, (and much more grown-up too).
[quote][p][bold]jools62[/bold] wrote: Baldcarl, crawl back under the stone you were born under[/p][/quote]jools62 - don't get so wound up over a comment that is obviously meant to cause a reaction! Also do you always have to resort to an insulting or derogatory reply, just because you don't agree? Adding an alternative opinion is much more helpful to the debate, (and much more grown-up too). Anonymous Me
  • Score: 2

10:29am Wed 21 May 14

MBR Extreme says...

As a cyclist who now cycles approximately 100 miles a week I feel cycling on the pavement where there are pedestrians is totally unacceptable it only gives cyclists a bad name , but I can see why people do it just sit and watch when cars get stuck behind a cyclist going over the bridge on westonzoyland road. Just wait and don't take risks overtaking putting everyone in danger.
As a cyclist who now cycles approximately 100 miles a week I feel cycling on the pavement where there are pedestrians is totally unacceptable it only gives cyclists a bad name , but I can see why people do it just sit and watch when cars get stuck behind a cyclist going over the bridge on westonzoyland road. Just wait and don't take risks overtaking putting everyone in danger. MBR Extreme
  • Score: 2

5:47pm Wed 21 May 14

jools62 says...

Baldcarl, i'm entitled to my opinion, you are what makes this country what it is,
Baldcarl, i'm entitled to my opinion, you are what makes this country what it is, jools62
  • Score: -3

9:08am Thu 22 May 14

Anonymous Me says...

jools62 wrote:
Baldcarl, i'm entitled to my opinion, you are what makes this country what it is,
jools62 - What is your opinion? We've only had a couple of insults thus far!
(Except an admission that you break the law and are selfish enough to risk injuring innocent pedestrians).
[quote][p][bold]jools62[/bold] wrote: Baldcarl, i'm entitled to my opinion, you are what makes this country what it is,[/p][/quote]jools62 - What is your opinion? We've only had a couple of insults thus far! (Except an admission that you break the law and are selfish enough to risk injuring innocent pedestrians). Anonymous Me
  • Score: 2

5:59am Fri 23 May 14

scally666 says...

up grading paths along canal and river would be idea.
you could get from huntworth ind est to bristol rd and only have to use new bridge across the river and a few quiet lanes
up grading paths along canal and river would be idea. you could get from huntworth ind est to bristol rd and only have to use new bridge across the river and a few quiet lanes scally666
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree