Britain’s Widest Cycle Lane Divides Opinion

Wed 18th Aug 2021

The recent government measures to prioritise pedestrians and cyclists over cars has been taken to another level in Dorset, where an 11ft cycle lane is actually wider than the traffic lane it runs alongside.

The huge cycle lane, which runs through the town of Wimbourne has had residents up in arms and might actually be contravening the Highway Code as the two-land road might not be wide enough and many have complained that wing-mirrors are being clipped when passing large lorry.

The cycle path is part of a £120million scheme linking Poole, Wimborne and Ferndown and will eventually see the network connected by a 16-mile route.

“Almost 80km of new cycle lanes, pedestrian pavements, and bus service improvements are being constructed in south east Dorset. They form a major part of the region's Transforming Travel programme,” said a Dorset Council spokesman.

“This programme is looking to promote change in the way people travel by providing safe infrastructure for alternative, green forms of transport and encouraging people to leave the car at home, particularly for shorter journeys.”

According to the Highway Code traffic lanes must be 12ft across, but this road is only 9ft 5in and residents have complained. One woman told the Daily Mail: “Just the other day we had two articulated lorries smashed their mirrors trying to pass each other on opposite sides of the road. Other lorries are having to pull into the cycle lane to pass safely. It's an absolute shambles.”