A new cycle path between Radstock and Midsomer Norton

A vital traffic-free route has reconnected local communities and given pupils safer routes to school
The challenge

The quickest and most direct way to travel between Radstock and Midsomer Norton was along the very busy A362 which carries over 15,000 vehcles per day and is frequently congested. There are steep hills to negotiate on the school journey and roads that are difficult to cross. Whilst there was some provision for cyclists and pedestrians in the area, it was indirect, disjointed and patchy. 

The solution

This is a step forward for improving transport and public spaces in the Midsomer Norton and Radstock area. Making walking and cycling a more attractive option is crucial to encouraging more people out of cars and using more sustainable methods of transport. This is why the Council has worked closely with Sustrans to get the Five Arches project underway. It will also benefit parents and pupils at local schools, like Norton Hill, who walk or cycle to school.

- Councillor Charles Gerrish, Bath & North East Somerset Council

A new route between Radstock and Midsomer Norton was created which linked a popular existing greenway in the north of Radstock with Midsomer town centre. The route, called ‘5 Arches’ is more direct than on-road alternatives and runs along the disused Somerset and Dorset railway line that previously joined the towns together. The project also provided safe crossings for Somervale Road and Charlton Road, which is outside Norton Hill School.

The difference

The route has given local residents a quicker and cheaper way to travel between the two communities. Running through attractive parks, it’s a great place to enjoy the outdoors, as well as being a practical way to get to local amenities. Importantly, the project has given local children a safe route to school, avoiding busy roads and providing better crossings. By connecting large housing estates with services, it’s given thousands of people the option to travel on foot and by bike.

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