KEEN cyclist Ed Stacey has launched a campaign for the introduction of more cycle racks in Saddleworth’s visitor hotspot.
Ed claims installing racks at three key sites in Uppermill would only cost Oldham Council around £1,000.
Despite ever growing popularity for individual and group cyclists, the village only has one public bike parking location at Saddleworth Pool and Leisure Centre.
“Uppermill is a cycle parking desert,” says Greenfield-based Ed, a former Oldham Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive.
“My dentist is in Uppermill and I finish up padlocking my bike to a road sign.
“My wife goes to pilates at Uppermill Civic Hall and would be happy to cycle but there is nowhere for her to leave the bike.
“The Civic Hall would be an ideal spot for a cycle rack as it is a well-used venue with plenty of space available.
“Outside Saddleworth Museum would be another good place. It’s a good location, receives plenty of visitors and there is sufficient space.”
Ed thinks a third rack could be installed in St Chad’s Gardens, close to Uppermill Library.
“The racks at the Leisure Centre are always well used but they’re not exactly in the centre of the village,” he added.
“I am a member of the Tame Valley Squash Club in Greenfield and we installed a cycle rack for £140. So, three racks with labour on top is not going to cost more than £1,000.”
Ed has written to Saddleworth Parish Council asking for support and the matter was raised at the September meeting of their Traffic and Transport sub committee.
“It seems to have had a good reception,” he told the Independent.
Joanne Betts, Oldham Council’s Principal Transport and Highways Policy Officer, told the committee: “Sometimes we get the opportunity to bid for funding for cycle parking which is how we got the cycle parking provision at Greenfield Station.
“There isn’t any funding at the moment but if I know you want something in Uppermill we can add it to the list of things to bid for.”
Last year a survey of Saddleworth’s transport habits gave cycling a big thumbs down.
78 per cent of more than 1,800 people who filled in the survey by Transport for Greater Manchester said they never cycled.
Asked what would make people cycle more and what would make them take up cycling the overwhelming response was: “Nothing”.