Westmorland and Furness Council and Cumberland Council have been successful in securing £1.6 million from the Government’s Active Travel Fund 4 (ATF4).
In February 2023, Cumbria County Council submitted the ATF4 funding bid to Active Travel England (ATE), the Government's new agency for active travel.
The bid focused on schemes prioritised within the county’s six Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIPs). The LCWIPs cover the areas of Barrow-in-Furness, Carlisle, Kendal, Penrith, Workington and Whitehaven.
The schemes supported by the successful bid will now be delivered by the two new unitary councils, which took over responsibility for council services in April.
The funding is part of the Government’s £2 billion commitment set out in ‘Gear Change’ to deliver a step change on the provision of active travel and better streets for everyone. ATF4 is a single year funding round, with local authorities competing for a proportion of a £200 million funding pot for 2022/23.
The funding will support the delivery of active travel infrastructure, which will be used to deliver improvements that allow walking, cycling and wheeling for everyday trips, supporting the uptake of active travel in Cumbria.
All LCWIP areas were included in the council's bid, with a mixture of schemes identified as either construction ready or requiring further development.
Designs will now be developed in consultation with local communities for the following schemes in Westmorland and Furness:
Kendal LCWIP Route 3: Riverside South, Stramongate to Nether Bridge
Barrow LCWIP Route 10: Duke Street and Schneider Square
Westmorland and Furness Council’s Cabinet member for Transport, Councillor Neil Hughes, welcomed the announcement, saying: "This will enable us to build on the work that is already under way thanks to earlier successful funding bids.
"This includes the development of two new cycling, walking and wheeling routes in Barrow that we have just started our design consultation on.
"This latest funding from Active Travel England means we can continue to build on that network of safe, healthy and environmentally friendly travel options in Barrow and Kendal.
"Having more people using active travel to get around not only helps improve overall levels of health and wellbeing but it also contributes to fresher air and a cleaner environment for all, which supports economic development and regeneration by making our towns much nicer places to visit, live in and travel around."