A brand new walking and cycling path that forms the eagerly awaited final link to the Phoenix Trail in Thame will be officially opened this Friday by Councillor Colin Daukes, Chairman of South Oxfordshire District Council.
The path has been developed by sustainable transport charity Sustrans to create a healthy and convenient way for people to get to school, the Thame Leisure Centre, and the popular Phoenix Trail that runs between Princes Risborough and Thame.
The Phoenix Trail is part of Sustrans' flagship project, the National Cycle Network. This latest link forms an important section of Route 57, giving people the chance to travel around town on foot and by bike, as well as offering a traffic-free route into the surrounding countryside.
Simon Pratt, Sustrans Regional Director, said “This final link has been a long time coming, but I am very pleased that the route through Thame is at last complete. I am sure it will be a huge benefit, not only for school pupils, but also for all residents to access the Thame Leisure Centre and the National Cycle Network.”
The new path crosses the playing fields at Lord Williams's School, enabling pupils and staff to travel between the Upper and Lower school without having to go through the town centre.
Daniel Cuell, a teacher at Lord Williams's School, said: “We are thrilled that the new link path to Hatchett's Lane is now completed. I'm confident that we will be able to continue to encourage our young people and parents to use this route.”
The path will also help pupils from John Hampden Primary School, who can now walk to the swimming pool rather than having to go by coach.
Alan Haigh, Head Teacher of John Hampden Primary School, said: “The path is a sustainable investment for the future of Thame, providing a safe, enjoyable and healthy traffic-free environment for children and families.”
The official opening will also include the unveiling of a new sculpture by the artist Lucy Casson. It is another in her hugely popular series of “characters on poles” which have charmed visitors on the Phoenix Trail at Towersey.
South Oxfordshire District Council contributed over £100,000 towards the project, which also received funding from the Department for Transport through Sustrans' Links to Schools programme.
Colin Daukes, Chairman of South Oxfordshire District Council said: “I am delighted to officially open this new path, and I hope it will provide a great deal of pleasure for local people and visitors to our district. “
Source of story: Sustrans.
Posted: Monday 9 June 2008.
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