The Ryedale Cycle Forum has been meeting regularly over the last few years to plan and consider ways in which to promote various aspects of cycling within the District, particularly cycle routes and trails. Apart from specific trails created by the National Park Authority, there are very few cycle routes. There are minor and sometimes inadequate short sections beside major roads, and the old Byeways signposted routes and some signposted road routes for touring– apart from these, the availability of routes is non-existent in an area where all roads, are now busier and less well maintained.
If you have an idea of a cycle route within or into Ryedale, however big or small, please contact us to add it to this wish list. Routes should usually be shared, i.e available to horse riders and walkers, unless a parallel path is possible.
Over the last few years cycling in the UK has increased significantly, not only due to its health benefits and environmental benefits but also due to the recent successes of UK sports people in major cycling events e.g. the Olympics, and Tour de France. Yorkshire in particular has benefited from this with its own Tour de Yorkshire. Conversely the opportunity for the individual to cycle to work, for pleasure or with friends is inadequate and sometimes dangerous on increasingly potted and rutted roads.
Ryedale Cycle Forum would also welcome the involvement of Town and Parish Councils in helping to highlight particular possibilities where existing paths could be improved, or where new cycleways or multi-user routes could be installed.
If you have a potential scheme is mind, the process of improving or installing a cycleway or multi-user path is always to consult the landowner first. Next, win support from as many different potential future users and other parties as possible, as this makes the following steps much easier. Often some fundraising is then needed to pay for surveyor drawings, which need to be to NYCC standards for the Rights of Way Team and/or Highways Area 4 (Ryedale Area). NYCC might help out, or take over the scheme at this point, but they often don’t have the resources to take on what you might expect them to do. Get as much help from NYCC as you can at each stage, but you may have to keep on with the organising. If the scheme is within the National Park boundary, the National Park Authority Head Rangers are usually very helpful. The surveyor advice and technical drawings lead to getting quotes for the scheme, then further fundraising and then installation. It may take many months; persistence and determination is required! If you start on a scheme, do let Ryedale Cycle Forum know, as we might be able to help to get supporters, information, or to suggest current funding possibilities.
Here is our wish list so far; we would welcome further suggestions:-
Malton to Pickering Cycle Route
Ryedale District Council has already taken the initiative to fund the feasibility study by SUSTRANS, of a cycle route between Malton and Pickering linking the two market towns and creating a route for workers and leisure cyclists. This scheme has been awarded European Tourism Structural Investment Funding, with work due to start in 2021. Some sections still need some additional funding.
A cycle route from the York Rd Industrial Estate to Huttons Ambo Lane end – incorporating the parishes of Malton and Huttons Ambo
A scheme has been implemented, in response to a request by the Forum, to create a 0.5 mile long section of two way, off-road segregated cycle path alongside the A64 at Musley Bank. linking the Huttons Ambo turn-off with Malton’s York Road. This will be very useful to touring and recreational cyclists, travelling between York and Malton. Signed routes between York and Malton should now be considered. The route into Malton needs improving. For further A64 ideas please see A64 page.
Castle Howard Estate
Ryedale Cycle Forum are pleased to be working with Castle Howard Estate as part of their development plan “One Estate One Vision”. The Estate approached the forum in 2019, for help with ideas for developing their facilities for cyclists. Consideration is also being given to “greener travel” by encouraging and enabling Ryedale’s residents and visitors to cycle to the attractions of the Castle Howard Estate. We hope to be able to share more news in the near future. In the meantime, do have a look at what is on offer at Castle Howard.
Details of this scheme can be found via a seperate page here.
Kirkbymoorside to Keldholme link
Kirkbymoorside Environment Group raised funds from The Co-op Community Fund, and other fundraising activities, to pay for a surveyor to produce technical drawings for this cycle way. A small amount of S106 monies was allocated to this scheme from the local housing development, which paid for a widened section of path to be installed by Kirkbymoorside sportsfield. A further sum is needed to extend the widened section to the Old Road, and to install signs, dropped kerbs, and also safety features at the sportsfield entrance. Kirkbymoorside Environment Group have raised a further £4000, and are currently working with NYCC Area 4 Highways to decide what parts of the scheme to do next and what further funds are needed.
Norton/Malton/Old Malton Link – incorporating the parishes of Norton, Malton and Old Malton
There is an existing right of way north from the Fire station to the Old Malton Road that passes the Orchard Field site and Fitzwilliam Estate office. Facilities at Orchard Fields for leisure have recently been improved but a tarmac route along this footpath from Sheepfoot Hill and an improved pedestrian/cycle path along the south side of the road past RDC offices to Old Malton would enable the linking of two or three communities without the need to travel up Castlegate. Suitable signage and markings would be required at the start and end of this route. A new bridge where the former railway crossed the river is also a possibility, it would also have to cross the railway.
NYCC, working with RDC, have appointed consultants to develop a Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) phase 1 study for Malton and Norton. Consultation has been undertaken and work on the study is nearing completion.
Hovingham to Malton – Path for Everyone. Incorporating the parishes of Malton, Broughton, Swinton, Amotherby, Barton-le-Street and Slingsby.
Ryedale Cycle Forum are currently working with a small group of residents to grow support for this route. A sketch map of a possible route is to be shared with Parish Councils along the route, to get an agreed route and community support. We will then be working towards having a costed scheme with surveyor drawings. After that, we will be looking for funding to install the route.
The development along the Broughton Road and Pasture Lane in Malton, has resulted in a realigned Broughton Road and different access to Old and New Malton. Connections need to be considered to take cyclists safely into Malton and joining the Malton-Pickering route. The cycle route out to Hovingham is a challenging project which has been considered by NYCC Highways in the past but never implemented.
Pickering to Helmsley
The above Kirkbymoorside to Keldholme link will eventually be part of a Pickering to Helmsley Route, including some road-side paths, and some quiet roads and some bridleway sections. The Parishes of Wombleton, Nawton, Beadlam, Sinnington, Marton, Normanby, Wrelton, Aislaby and Middleton could all be linked up- with routes of National Cycle Network standards, by a Pickering-Helmsley route.
Ryedale Cycle Forum are currently pushing for safe cycle routes to Ryedale (High) School from Kirkbymoorside and from Helmsley, and the school are in support. Most of the high school pupils use school transport buses to get to the school, which is in the small village of Nawton. Social Distancing, as a Covid-19 precaution, will be very difficult on such buses when the schools go back in September. Ryedale Cycle Forum are seeking the support of North Yorkshire County Council Highways, to try to get some of the emergency government funding that has been provided for cycling to support social distancing, to pay to install part of this route.
Thornton-le-Dale to Wilton, A170, on South verge
A cycleway along the verge on the South side of the A170 between Wilton and Thornton-le-Dale would be very useful for connecting existing quieter lanes and routes in both villages. A footpath already exists on the North verge that is used by pedestrians, including dog walkers. Because cyclists are likely to want to go quite fast along side this busy main road, a designated cycleway would seem the sensible solution. There would also be occasional use by mobility vehicles and horse-riders. Visibility is good, and signs would indicate that cyclists must slow down to allow these other users.
Pickering’s missing (free) bike track
Pickering should, by now, have a cycle/foot track linking the town and Black Bull, with its two pubs and three camping/caravanning/holiday lodge sites, as well as a large holiday complex on the former showfield itself.
Pickering Civic Society suggested to the intending developers of the Pickering Exhibition and Leisure Village back in 2013 that a bike track through the site would be a good idea and should help with planning approval. The development was approved and the bike track written into the planning conditions. It was to be paid for by the developer and opened by August 2014. In 2015 the developer was allowed a bit more leeway on completion dates, but the planners stipulated that the cycle track was to be finished and open to the public by June 2017. Sadly, this didn’t happen and the developer went in to liquidation. The whole site, partly developed, is for sale. See planning map of the proposed developed.
The cycle route would be a superb facility, both for the 1000 + holiday residents of the Black Bull and showfield sites and for the people of Pickering heading to events on the showfield or the pubs at Black Bull. It will remove the need to cycle along the A169. Extending the route southwards along the A169 verge would give access to the Beansheaf Hotel and the Beansheaf Industrial Park.
But, there is always the risk that the new owner of the showfield development will not build the route. It is there important to emphasise the importance this cycle route will be for Pickering residents and visitors and the local environment. The Pickering/Black Bull cycle track is just too good to loose and needs to be safeguarded and built as soon as possible.
If you have any comments about these proposals please email Helen Gundry at Ryedale Cycle Forum.
We request the District Council to provide a substantial allocation from the S106 contributions being received over the next few years, towards the schemes summarised above. We would also welcome help from other funding bodies, including match-funding.