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Active Travel Fund

The Active Travel Fund is one of several funding streams set up by the government for walking and cycling schemes, helping to promote healthy travel, reduce emissions and grow the economy.

The first tranche of funding was announced during the early months of the Covid-19 pandemic. There have been three further rounds since then.

Connecting the Active Quarter: Access for All

Following a fourth bidding round, in March 2023 we were awarded £642k to build a new 1300m traffic-free route, accessible for those walking, wheeling and cycling within Delapre Abbey. Cycle parking and wayfinding signage will also be provided.

The new route will enable residents living in Far Cotton and the town centre to connect with employment opportunities in Brackmills Industrial Estate and other key amenities, like the University of Northampton, within the Active Quarter. The new routes will support ongoing wellbeing and social prescribing projects at Delapre Abbey. Construction is planned for Autumn 2023.

Abington Area Active Travel Scheme: Billing Road Corridor

In Tranche 2 of funding, we were invited to bid for further funds for permanent measures which promote active travel.
£1.332m was awarded to fund:

  • improved cycling facilities along Billing Road between York Road and Rushmere Road
  • light segregation provided on west/southbound cycle lane on:
    • Wellingborough Road (west of Church Way)
    • Abington Park Crescent
    • Park Avenue South

Following strong opposition from local residents and businesses to an original proposal to convert Billing Road into a one-way road, we have worked with the Department for Transport to revise the proposal and instead develop an alternative that encourages walking and cycling.

The Abington Area Active Travel Scheme now seeks to improve:

  • Abington Park Crescent – a new segregated 2-way cycleway that meets a new upgraded crossing at the junction with Park Avenue South  
  • Bridgewater Drive - a new 2-way cycleway towards the school and new road crossings
  • Park Avenue South - new cycleways that merge into existing cycling facilities
  • Billing Road / Rushmere Road junction – significant pedestrian crossing facilities, enabling ‘all direction crossing’, along with improved traffic signal technology to better manage all movements

Consultation

Consultation on these proposals has now closed.

We are currently considering all the feedback and comments received. 

Tranche 1 - what we did

The funding from the first tranche was known as the Emergency Active Travel Fund and was used to:

  • Undertake an initial public opinion survey in early 2021 to gain the views of the population on the need for improvements to walking and cycling facilities, the types of improvements that are needed and some of the challenges faced in implementation
  • Install cycle racks at several town locations
  • Install a temporary bus stop at Mercers Row
  • Install a temporary segregated cycle way on Rushmere Road
  • Install temporary footway widening on St Giles Street
  • Install 24-hour bus lanes on Weedon Road and St James Road, which has since reverted to its pre-Covid-19 operating times.

All the temporary measures have now been removed.

Last updated 24 October 2023