Letter: What a way to celebrate the Tour de France one year on

Marcel Kittell wins the first stage of the 2014 Tour de France in Harrogate from Peter Sagan after Mark Cavendish crashed at the bottom of Parliament Street.  5 July 2014. Picture Bruce Rollinson
Marcel Kittell wins the first stage of the 2014 Tour de France in Harrogate from Peter Sagan after Mark Cavendish crashed at the bottom of Parliament Street. 5 July 2014. Picture Bruce Rollinson

It seems remarkable that to celebrate the anniversary of the Tour De France in Harrogate, the council have painted No Cycling signs on several paths on the Stray.

The popularity of particular cycle routes is self selecting - if a lot of people use a specific path, it must be because it provides a useful link.

All four paths near Tewit Well have always been useful ‘unofficial’ cycle routes and, due to where they go, they always will be.

If they need widening slightly to become official shared use paths, then the council should consult on the matter. Just painting No Cycling on them is avoiding the issue.

Interestingly, W Haythornthwaite, in his book Harrogate Story states “...the road from the Prince of Wales to the Tewit Well. This road is now a walk, but because of its ancient status, it may be used by cyclists.”

This path is slightly over two metres wide, that’s a bit wider than the Beryl Burton path, the Starbeck to Bilton railway path and the viaduct to Ripley section of the Nidderdale Greenway.

These are all shared use paths, so there is really no good reason to ban cycling on this Stray path.

In Cambridge nearly all the paths across the parks and commons are shared use (and some are less than two metres wide) and they work fine. Common sense will always override illogical rules.

Richard Myers

St Catherines Road, Harrogate