Review by Sustrans rules that only traffic-free routes will be part of its network, which excludes the UK’s most popular long-distance cycle path
The National Cycle Network (NCN) will lose almost a quarter of its 16,000 miles of UK-wide cycling and walking routes from Monday, as part of an ongoing plan to improve safety standards. Some of the UK’s favourite long-distance cycle routes, including the Coast to Coast (C2C) from Whitehaven to Tynemouth, will now no longer be part of the official network because it has a fast 4.5-mile on-road stretch over the Hartside Pass in Cumbria.
The move follows a 2018 review by Sustrans, the charity that created the NCN, which found that 42% of the network’s routes were “poor”, with substandard crossings, signage or main road sections, and 4% “very poor”, taking cyclists on roads with heavy traffic. In addition, urban roads with speed limits in excess of 20mph and rural roads faster than 40mph are being taken out of the network.