Letter: Rush hour on the Thames towpath

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The Independent Online
Sir: The proposal (report, 30 December) for a cycle way along the Thames from Kingston to Greenwich would be excellent if it involved creating a new track for cyclists, but your article states that this is not the case. Most of the route is intended to be on 'existing paths', including the entire towpath from Kingston to Putney. But such a scheme would certainly not provide the promised 'benefits for walkers as well as cyclists'.

The towpath along the upper tideway is an exceptional amenity, heavily used both by serious walkers and by families just strolling. At present there weave among the weekend crowds, with considerable difficulty, a small number of cyclists who disregard the 'No Cycling' signs.

If cyclists were to be officially encouraged on to the towpath, without the provision of additional space, the entirely predictable result would be chaos, danger and mounting aggression between two incompatible groups.

Yours etc,




30 December