Using the existing river Dart footbridge and existing quiet lanes
Route 3 Estimated Cost
New path 0..67km 126929
Repair existing 0.7km 50000
Rail Security 30000
Design DCC 39250
Design NPS 4237
Total 3 including 20% Contingencies/Optimism Bias £312,259
The route branches off the main cycle path through the town which goes towards Dartington to the north and Sharpham to the south. Using the existing bridge across the River Dart which serves the South Devon Railway Station and Rare Breeds Centre. The intended route then turns away from the station and follows a field boundary to join an existing lane currently agricultural access and access to SWW pumping stations. This crosses the over the railway line and continues past the SWW water treatment works to rejoin the “highway” lane to Littlehempston.
The lane has limited traffic, serving only SWW, farms and a handful of residential properties. The Private track is in fair condition but some potholes and central grass/mossy strip. Both are single track between hedges. The gradients are moderate
A new path would require construction on the east side of the Dart between the bridge and existing lane. Some pothole repairs and resurfacing of the SWW and highway lanes would be desirable.
There is scope for a section of new off-road path parallel to the steeper uphill section of the SWW track. Accommodation works will be required to increase security of the station and rare breeds farm.
Land would need to be acquired for the new path works and agreements for the use of the footbridge and SWW accesses Environmental Effects Affected land is open grazing and the effect on habitat will be minimal and may be mitigated by landscaping and screening if necessary.
The route is direct and is well connected to the existing cycle network in Totnes, schools, colleges, hospital, railway and town centre shops.
The most attractive aspects of this route are the low journey time, moderate gradients and total “Climb”, good connection to the Totnes cycleway network and significant origins and destinations. Less attractive is the on-road nature of the route, albeit lightly trafficked. The route is therefore less likely to attract short distance leisure walkers/ cyclists family groups with young children and disabled. It makes most sense in the context of the overall long distance route. Pay and display parking is available near the start in Totnes.
Safety rating of the route itself is acceptable for all groups with the proviso that younger children would need careful supervision on the section on existing lanes towards Littlehempston.
At present the footbridge is locked when the Railway and Rare breeds Centre are closed and there are concerns over their security if the path is open 24/7. For this reason it will need to be considered how the path is routed and additional security measures, fencing, cctv may be required. There is also the issue of security of Railtrack’s main line which could be accessed from the SDR. Security fencing would require upgrading to steel palisade type.
This is the most direct route with some leisure potential on the section of new off-road path and of opportunities to watch steam trains. Option to route along existing track to reduce the length of new path required. It is likely that this option would be strenuously opposed by the South Devon Railway. Low cost and medium benefit.