Bournemouth NIMBYs lose cycle track fight

250-metre Slades Farm track gets go-ahead despite residents' objections

by Simon_MacMichael   February 17, 2010 news

Cyclists in the Bournemouth area are set to benefit from a new cycle track in the South Coast resort after the local council rejected objections from local residents and approved the £880,000 scheme.

The 250-metre track will be used for recreation, fitness training and competition, and will also provide a safe location for cycle training to be given to youngsters. Besides cyclists, it will also be available to skateboarders and joggers. The site will also include toilets, a café and a play area.

Slades Farm was selected as the most suitable site for the new facility from a shortlist of 11 locations identified by the council to replace an earlier track around the cricket pitch at Winton Cricket Ground, where usage had to be restricted during the 1990s as a result of safety concerns.

That track was operated by Bournemouth Arrows Cycling Club, and while the new track will be managed by the council’s leisure services department, the club remains closely involved, and in 2006 and 2007 operated Learn to Ride classes for children on the proposed site in order to test potential demand, with between 50 and 60 children aged under 12 participating.

The Ensbury Park Residents Association opposed the plans, however, and sought to have the land designated with town green status.

That proposal that was rejected by the council upon the recommendation of a planning inspector, who decided that for town green status to be granted, it would need to be shown that people using the land were trespassing, which would not apply in this case since the cyclists would be using it with the permission of the landowner – Bournemouth Council.

The decision means that the scheme can now go ahead with no further legal hindrance.

Jean Scovell, chairman of the Ensbury Park Residents Association, told the Bournemouth Echo: “I don’t think there’s anywhere else we can go. The inspector recommended it and we can’t appeal the decision.”

She added: “I am still glad we fought, because it gave us four years.”

Following the planning decision, the council will be able to obtain £440,000 in funding from British Cycling, with the balance of the cost of the project coming from developers under section 106 agreements and £130,000 from the council’s own funds.
Councillor Anne Filer, Cabinet Member for Tourism, told the newspaper: “I’m thrilled the plan for a modern cycling facility, which will benefit all ages and abilities, can now go ahead.”

Chris Turner, Executive Principal at Glenmoor School and Winton College, which is close to the proposed facility, added: “This opens up all sorts of possibilities for educational, recreational and leisure use. We’re very excited.”

4 user comments

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She added: “I am still glad we fought, because it gave us four years.” ...

What a lovely person - glad she held up an important facility and cost the local council extra money to push the plans thru - sheeh!

Buddha said:

Believe nothing, No matter where you read it,
Or who has said it, Not even if I have said it,
Unless it agrees with your own reason
And your own common sense.

mad_scot_rider's picture

posted by mad_scot_rider [586 posts]
18th February 2010 - 11:02

1 Like

i bet she's the first to p*ss and moan when there's kids knocking about in Ensbury Park with nothing to do

purplecup's picture

posted by purplecup [233 posts]
18th February 2010 - 11:13

1 Like

" it gave us four years" - that's four years of letters, arguments, protests and objections. In other words, four years of negativity, a crap way to use your time in my opinion.

Others, including schools, are more positive, it seems.

Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [2421 posts]
18th February 2010 - 12:26


It is obvious that none of you are aware of the implications that this project has caused, probably because you do not live in that area, or are cyclists. I live in the area, and cycle, but I did not want this carbunkel on the bit of land that remained available for public useage. The Council lied through their teeth when they said that a TVG Order would cease all sport. If anyone cares to look this up, they will find that all existing sport and sport fields remain in situ, and are not affected by a TVG Order. Find out the facts first before casting aspertions.

posted by TheDistrict [1 posts]
13th January 2011 - 16:19