The Project, Aims and Benefits of the Worcester, Bromyard, Leominster Greenway
The Worcester, Bromyard, Leominster Greenway Project
The purpose of the Worcester Bromyard Leominster Greenway is to create a walking, cycling and horse-riding track along, or as near as possible to, the course of the original Worcester Bromyard Leominster railway. The route is about 25 miles. It passes through some of the finest Herefordshire and Worcestershire countryside as it crosses the Bromyard plateau before reaching the Teme valley. The Bromyard-Leominster section was closed in 1952 and the Bromyard-Worcester section closed 1964.
The aim is to follow as closely as possible the old railway route all the way from Worcester to Leominster via Bromyard. A secondary aim is to connect wherever possible into existing walking and cycling routes forming a bridge between the West Midlands and the Marches. Our aim is to deliver the scheme by building support within the community and by negotiation with the landowners. To this end we are happy to look at local diversions and accommodations that meet our aim of a safe route – one that we would be happy for our children and grandchildren to cycle on.
Opening this route will deliver many significant benefits.
First it will provide a sustainable local access route for both urban and rural residents of East Herefordshire and West Worcestershire. People with disabilities, walkers, cyclists, horse riders would enjoy the easy access and good quality surfaces to exercise, fight the obesity problem, enjoy the fresh air and take in the marvellous scenery. Children will be able to walk or cycle to school in a safe environment; Horse-riders and people with mobility difficulties would be able to enjoy the fresh air on a high-quality route with a solid and relatively flat surface.
Secondly, it will bring substantial economic benefits. Visitors will enjoy this quality route which does offer stunning views, and an experience to remember. If we can re-open some of the vast viaducts or replace them with new (lighter) bridges over the valleys, the route could become a major regional tourist attraction.
Third, the creation of this section would form a gateway from the already established West Midlands sustainable routes into the Marches and on to Mid Wales, or possibly South Wales via Kington and the Golden Valley route or directly into Hereford. Upon completion, this single project could form an important catalyst in the creation of a co-ordinated and continuous sustainable route from Birmingham onto the South and West Wales coast.
Putting numbers on the benefits for one single scheme is difficult. However, Sustrans (The UK walking and cycling charity) estimated that in 2017 the 16,000 miles of the national cycle network:
- Saved the economy £88m from reduced road congestion
- Prevented 630 early deaths whilst averting nearly 8,000 serious long-term health conditions
- Contributed £2.5 billion to local economies
The £2.5 bn boost to the economy, scaled down to the 25 miles of our route would realistically amount to nearly £4 million p.a. for local communities – even more if an established long-distance route were to be developed. And yet the estimated cost of development is estimated to be between £100 and £150 per metre – a total development cost of between £4.0m and £5.9m,
IMPORTANT LINKS please take part in the survey to show support, for more information regarding this project please refer to the website.