|Green light for Standish cycling project
A project to restore an old mineral line in Wigan Borough has been given the go ahead after an objection to the scheme has been withdrawn.
‘The Line’ is a former railway track and heritage feature for Standish, providing a key route into the village and to Standish High School, which isn’t currently used to its full potential.
The planned works, by Wigan Council as part of The Deal, will see the Line undergo a full upgrade from a muddy track to a surfaced and lit walking, cycling and bridle path.
It will be accessible all year round by local pupils, dog-walkers, shoppers, cyclists and pedestrians, providing an accessible way to travel into Standish village and encouraging more people to leave the car at home.
It will also help to reduce congestion and improve air quality and noise levels by helping to reduce then number of private cars being used for local journeys.
With a history of coal transportation, The Line is a key heritage point for Standish and was raised by the local community at a have your say session as part of The Deal in 2016.
The project stalled last year due to an objection received from a landowner, however confirmation that the objection has now been withdrawn means that the council can now re-tender the scheme ready for work to start later this year.
The works will be planned to maintain the rural characteristics of the route and to be sensitive to wildlife in the area.
The funding to improve the former railway track will come from section 106 contributions from developers who are building new homes in Standish.
The new surfaced and lit route will run from School Lane through to Brookfield Road for a more direct and safer off-road connection to Shevington Moor.
Cllr David Molyneux, deputy leader at the council, said: “This is the long-awaited good news we have been hoping for. We know how much residents in Standish want The Line project to happen and we’re glad we can finally get it moving as part of The Deal.
“It will provide a quick, walking and cycling route into Standish village centre which should take traffic off the local roads by encouraging more people to leave the car at home.
“Along with supporting people to lead healthier lifestyles, by giving them the option to walk or cycle, it will also reduce the levels of noise and pollution through a reduction in cars.”
A spokesman for Standish Voice said: "It is very good news that the legal situation regarding The Line has now been resolved and the council can quickly proceed with bringing this upgrade to reality.
"We have been urging the council to complete the upgrade of the route as soon as possible as it will be a great facility for residents and pupils at Standish High School.
"With new homes being constructed near The Line, we hope it will go some way to giving new residents other options in accessing the centre of Standish without using their cars as there are increasing problems of congestion and a lack of parking."
For updates on work to the project and more information about cycling in Wigan Borough visit www.wigan.gov.uk/cycling.