Over 3000 local people and many businesses, clubs and community groups in and around Saffron Walden have shown their support for Access Walden in one way or another.

It goes without saying that safer cycling and walking is high on their agenda.

We had 300 people sign an i-petition stating that they support the urgent need for a pedestrian/cycle route between Saffron Walden and Audley End station along the shortest route – Wenden Road. Click here to see the signatures.

Then, over a three day period, Jan single handedly collected 3000 signatures on a paper petition in the market square!

On October 16th, 2011, we hosted a Ride ‘n Ramble along Wenden Road and counted just shy of 900 people.  695 of these signed a pledge that if a safe and attractive pedestrian and cycle route were implemented along Wenden Road, they would use it.

In September 2012, under the direction of Essex County Council, we presented an exhibition to showcase the possible route options.  1615 people completed our questionnaire with 99.5% choosing an option.  You can see the results of this exhibition here.

During these events and surveys, we have received a lot of comments.  Here are just some of the 500 comments Access Walden have received –

Verona “I fully endorse all the ideas in this campaign. The time is right, and Access Walden has caught a rising tide of common feeling. People are ready to participate in a scheme that will ensure new behaviour in travel options in order to reduce their carbon footprint.”

Simon “I moved to Saffron Walden from London 10 years ago, and was a regular cycle commuter in London. Despite the very busy streets that I used to cycle in London, I am not exaggerating when I say that Wenden Road is one of the most unpleasantly threatening and dangerous cycling routes I know of, particularly setting off from the station when a trainload of London commuters is setting out in their cars and apparently in a desperate rush to get home. A cycle route, and a walking route, between Audley End and the town it serves is long overdue.”

Erica “I have recently been working surveying cycle routes in various parts of the country and therefore have firsthand experience of how vital it is to have good cycle access to well used stations. I have used Audley End station myself on several occasions and know that there is an urgent need for a safe cycle route to it.”

Margaret “This would make cycling to the station much less hazardous and would encourage more cycling, less driving to the station.”

Pauline “It is high time this was put in place. This is an immensely dangerous route to walk”

Jane “This road is too busy for cyclists and dangerous for cars wishing to overtake! There is going to be a fatality soon. Let’s get something done about this before it’s too late!”

Sue “Having a safe cycle route from Saffron Walden to the station at Audley End would be a huge improvement in 2 major ways: a reduction in the number of cars and therefore in carbon emissions, improved health for those who choose to cycle. I would love to cycle more but don’t because it feels to be too dangerous.”

Graham “I use this route approximately twice per week as part of my cycle journey to/from work between Bishop’s Stortford and Saffron Walden. I support wholly the aims of this petition, given the dangerous nature of this road for cyclists. High traffic speeds and the presence of wide buses create a genuine hazard for the many cyclits who use this route, compounded by the poor sight lines along the road for motorists. Many motorists attempt to overtake cyclists on bends, creating a hazard for vehicles driving in the other direction. Given the availability of alternative routes between Saffron Walden and the station, and the lack of housing on Wenden Road, is it not feasible to make the road one way for vehicular traffic, thus making room for appropriate two-way cycle and pedestrian facilities?”

Sarah “We live in Newport, and would love to have a safe cycle route to SWCHS as I work there and my children attend the school.”

Rob “I would also like to encourage my children to cycle to the station, at some stage in the future but this is simply not an option without improved and safe access”

Anne “I would only walk from the station to the town if there were a footpath. It’s far too dangerous to walk without a footpath especially when pregnant/with a pram.”

Hazel “A pedestrian/cycle route is urgently required between Saffron Walden and Audley End Station. It is extremely dangerous at the moment for cyclists and pedestrians without a path. It would benefit the town and residents immensely to have a path.”

Julie “Being unable to drive I regularly walk to work from Walden to Newport. Even though there is a pavement all the way there on the Newport Road, it is still dangerous as the cars drive at high speed and there is no protection. A safe pedestrian/cycle track would be invaluable to me along the walden to Audley End station road.”

Eleanor “There are many blind corners where i have experienced cars breaking dangerously when they encounter a cyclist/walker; therefore having a pedestrian/cycle route would reduce the potential risk of collisions.”

Gordon “You have the full support of all members of my family and I”

Tina “All the time we are being told that we must exercise more but where is there in Saffron Walden to ride your bike without the fear of being knocked off by motorists? This is a great idea, it could be used by commuters and also others who just want a safe route for a bike ride.”

Mr. Peters “This looks to be a “no brainer”. I trust that the relevant authorities see it the same way and put it into a plan for immediate action.”

Briony “I have walked from Saffron Walden to Audley End on several occasions and found it most stressful and dangerous. I would definitely make this journey more often if there was a safer route to take, i.e. a proper pavement which wasn’t so narrow.”

Michelle “This path is way overdue, I cycle this route and fear for my safety. Help keep us safe and reduce pollution which is on the rise in Saffron Walden, and don’t wait for a fatal accident to happen – let’s be proactive, not reactive.”

Susan “I once walked this route and decided it was too dangerous to do a regular train user I would welcome a safe path.”

Richard “A safe route for cyclists and pedestrians between Saffron Walden and its station should have been created years ago.”

Katharine “This would make a great difference to the lives of my family – both adults getting to work and teenagers getting into Cambridge. It is very high up on my list of local priorities”

Maddy “Having walked back from station myself recently as there were no buses for half an hour, agree this is an excellent idea. The road is very dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists alike. Observed a great many people cycling to station. If you are driving it is difficult to pass them safely. Think this should be a priority area for ECC/UDC expenditure!”

Inger “Having a dedicated walking and cycling route from the station to the town makes sense in every way. It would contribute to road safety, health (both fitness and mental wellbeing) and to sustainability. I work in Cambridge and a safe route to Audley End would encourage me to travel to work by bike and train rather than to drive.”

Tristan “A dedicated and separate cycle/pedestrian route would make sense for all users of Wenden Road. Why is it proving so difficult to achieve?”

Mr. Jones “As a motorist, a pedestrian and a cyclist on this route, it is vital for all road users that a safe route is available for all. Cyclists frequently cause problems for motorists as there is very little chance to over take and many blind corners mean that a cyclist can ‘appear’ with no warning. For pedestrians and cyclists, there is no opportunity to position oneself safely while using the road. A separate route, with a substantial barrier rather than just a line on the road, is vital to protect all road users”

Sussie “A safe route for walkers and cyclists should have been put in place years ago. The council talks about being environmentally friendly, yet the absence of a safe route does not encourage people to leave their cars at home. The sooner this gets done the better.”

Clive ” I live in Saffron Walden and would use this route regularly for my train journey from Audley End to Liverpool Street”

Caroline “I currently take the bus but would like to opportunity to be able to walk or cycle to the station. Currently the only option is to walk along a very busy main road – either to Audley End House or up Sparrow End hill.”

Clare “A great deal of money has been spent on providing new car park spaces at Audley End. It is just as important that funds are put also towards safe access for local pedestrians and cyclists – and for the reduction of carbon usage.”

Catherine ” If there were a safe path to the station from SW I would enjoy walking there and would save the parking costs. It is far too dangerous to walk along the present road.”

Caroline “We have recently moved to Saffron Walden from Cambridge and are an active family with two young children. I regularly used a child bike triailer to transport my children prior to our move, it has proved extremely difficult to use it to the same degree in SW and certainly almost impossible to use it to get to Audley End station. I am reluctant to use my car for enviromental issues and would very much like to promote a healthy lifestyle to my yound children. Providing a pedestrian/cycle route bewteen SW and Audley End station would provide opportunties for low carbon, healthy travel.”

Florence “It’s about time we had proper cycle path networks around here.”

Martin “I firmly believe a dedicated cycle route on Wenden Road would make cycling safer and more attractive, and would see cycling rates increase significantly. Let’s get it done!”

Tom “I am soon moving into Saffron Walden, but have been alarmed to find there is no safe cycle path from the town to the train station at Wendens Ambo. I would like to cycle every day to the station, but along with many other people I am deterred by the dangerous roads.”

Seth “I cycle it often and I’ve had a few to many near misses. In Germany there are paths alongside any major road, and in France old train tracks are converted into cycle paths. Its embarrassing how few we have here.”

Tim “Wenden Road could be proof that you can consider health, safety and an attractive environment all at the same time. I fully support this!”

Maria “I would like to walk and cycle to and from the Audley End Station but the roads are far too narrow and dangerous at the moment. I’m forced to use a bus to come back from work in Cambridge and that takes forever!”

Marcus “Safety in the community is naturally an extremely important reason why people should sign this petition. But also In recent years the government have urged commuters to walk and cycle to work, they want the nation to keep fit and help the environment. This is also why Access Walden should be taken seriously by people who can make a difference.”

Mike “I cycled to the station every day between 1974 and 1979 and it was dangerous even then-it has not improved at all since. A strip of land adjacent to the road was and remains, the best option.”

Chris “As a regular user of this route both cycling and driving it is imperative that a cycling route is implemented before a life or lives are lost.”

Greg “Using this route daily I have seen and experienced a frightening number of near misses, the implications of which could be catastrophic. A safe route for pedestrians and cyclists is absolutely imperative.”

Jamie “Returning home from hectic India can be a calming experience, but I’ve noticed a lot of changes in Saffron Walden recently. As the town gets more crowded, the level of traffic is becoming unsustainable. Cycling, therefore, is a logical alternative. The success at the Olympics is a great spring-board for cycling but unless it receives the support of the local community, Saffron Walden will become a bloated, congested and ultimately dangerous place for school children and commuters alike. It’s about time the council recognised the benefits of cycling by taking on board some of the simple and cost-effective solutions outlined by Access Walden”

Isabelle “It is about time that the council does something about this. The lack of footpath / cycle path between Walden and Audley End station, and the lack of traffic calming measure in the areas mentioned above are just a fatality waiting to happen! Also, it goes against the claim that the council wishes to reduce emissions!”

Bridget “Please make a cycle path, this would really change the way we live”

Clare “As a keen cyclist and advocate of healthier living I feel if we are to promote a healthier population we can only do if the environment encourages it with certain safety measures.”

Louise “Provision for cyclists/ walkers would be a great amenity”

Jade “Many more cycle routes needed in Uttlesford in general. I’m a daily cyclist and the provision is very bad and doesn’t encourage people to get active and cycle.”

Mrs. Gilmour “Using this route occasionally we have been concerned by the dangers posed by traffic especially lorries”

Angelika “I want to cycle with my children!”

Edward “I live in Newport and would cycle daily rather than drive if I could but this road is just too dangerous”

Liz “Audley End station is a vital transport link for SW; a safe pedestrian cycle path should be a priority to make up for the inconvenience caused to cyclists and pedestrians; Cambs would never let this problem exist”

Mr. Green “I am a Taxi driver and would welcome a cycle path”

Jack “I am glad to see this is being considered; I would consider changing my commute to Cambridge if this was put in.”

Naomi “I am afraid to cycle and very worried about the health of my husband who cycles daily and have have discouraged my son”

Mr. Williams “Great idea – there are no safe cycle routes into SW”

Emily “Safer cycling is a really important issue especially for children growing up locally”

Gareth “I drive vans a lot on the Wenden Road and have commented a lot on how dangerous it is for cyclists and pedestrians and how dangerous that can make it for us”

Miss Butt “It will promote healthy lifestyles, reduce traffic and increase commuter safety”

Kathleen “Cyclepaths in Cambridge are a great success, and should be implemented nationwide”

Mr. Gaymour “We cycle from Anstey to SW and the Wenden Road is rather treacherous”

Jennie “Would be amazing if this was the catalyst for more cycling lanes in Saffron Walden; I have keen cycling children and have to drive them to cycle”

Kate “We have land in Wenden but live in SW and travel this route every day.  It would be great to be able to walk as a family”

Janet “Needs to be done quickly before there is an accident – the road is dangerous especially for cyclists and cars cannot overtake safely”

Ben “Twice I have been knocked off my bike along Wenden Road”

Roger “Addressing these issues are long overdue and the promoters of the route are to be congratulated”

Sally “We are crying out for a safe cycle route between SW and Audley End Station!”

Jill “I think it is very important for cyclists in SW to be able to cycle to the station safely”

Andrew “This is absolutely essential for the town”

Katherine “Thank you so much for all your efforts – much appreciated”

Paul “The sooner the better!  Current road is very dangerous – I witnessed a very near accident to a cyclist 2 days ago”

Mark “I walk to AE station every day and am sure more people would if the path was put in place.  It would help car users as they wouldn’t have to slow for cyclists and walkers.  As a local commuter to London who doesn’t drive this is the single most important issue to me and I hope the path is completed before serious injury or loss of life occur along a very busy and regularly used pedestrian route”

Barbara “I’m a motorist and hate this road – it is so dangerous; it should be safe for all users”

Kate “We have 2 children aged 7 & 9 – would be great to get to the station on bike”

Joanna “I want my daughter (10) to get a road sense on her bike but currently have to drive her to Hatfield Forest for experience – not very green!”

Jon “This would encourage people to cycle which would lead to a greener and healthier community”

Jon “I drive and cycle the Wenden Road; when cycling I delay motorists and have to cycle wide round blind bends for visibility; when driving cyclists spaced along the route make overtaking dangerous”

Sibyl “I’ve lived here for 38 years and the Wenden Road needs to be safe enough for people to walk and cycle into town; it’s unbelievable that this hasn’t been done; glad something is finally happening”

Chris “I cycle to Audley End station daily and Wenden Road currently is very dangerous”

Katie “I would be much happier with a cycle path – my husband commutes on it every day and it’s not very safe for him at the moment”

Huw “I use the route for access to the station; as a car-driver, I’m aware of the danger to cyclists and pedestrians”

Richard “I drive to the station every day and would be happy to use the Newport Road”

Jacqueline “I feel quite strongly that this route should be made safer for cyclists and pedestrians”

Fiona “Anything to improve cycling facilities and increase people cycling in general is a good thing”

Nina “We are an English and Dutch couple who live here with a young family – think about the cost savings on school buses if you put cycle paths in from villages – look at Holland!”

Adam “Be great to have this for jogging”

Sophie “A safe route is well overdue”

Mr. Ellington “Please make cycling safer before someone loses a child!”

Tim “I commute to Cambridge daily using the train and cycling to the station; the road is dangerous and really needs safety improvements – I cycle a lot so make this assessment having cycled many other roads”

Bjorn “As a Wendens Ambo resident, I think a safer route for pedestrians and cyclists is essential”

Sophie “Even if not using the road for cycling, would still feel a lot safer being able to walk along the road in the dark rather than taking longer routes into Saffron Walden”

 Sue “I’ve been waiting 15 years since I first moved to the town for this to happen”

Heather “We want to encourage people to get fit, save money, look after the environment and people to talk to each other. “

Patrick “I use the route as a cyclist and motorist and have been petrified at the aggressive nature of the motorists. This is a great scheme and will encourage my family to cycle.”

Stephanie “This is long overdue. I hope all councillors come together to work with the residents to identify funding to make this happen asap.”

Victoria “We’ve been waiting a long time for assistance on this roadway! Thanks for looking into it.”

Angela “I think this is a wonderful initiative -let’s go for it!”

Ian “This is an urgent need”

Jane “This would also be of benefit to my 3 children who use the train station, attend County High School”

Julie “Let this be the start of many more safe cycle and walking routes in this area”

Helen “I am a frequent bus user and have no objection to the bus routes being re-routed”

Simon “I can walk or cycle to the station, saving nearly £15 per week as well as being greener. Furthermore it is beyond reason that a major station to a town has no safe pedestrian access”

John “Long overdue that a safe cycle route is introduced. Reducing traffic to / from the station, encouraging people to cycle.”

Kirstie “It’s about time there was a safer route for commuters or for leisure to access Audley End”

Roger “This has been a long time waiting for people who use this route to cycle or walk to the town. The sooner this can be done, the better.”

Sara “This would be a good start to provision for alternative safe means of getting to station. It would be nice if at some point it would be extended to Route 11 (National Cycle Route) thus connecting SW”

Ben “I hope the council will take it seriously. It could make a life saving difference”

Amanda “Please do this, will be so good for health and environment”

Christine “We need more ways for bikes and pedestrians to move freely around where we live without being ‘in the way’ of cars or having to take our lives into our own hands.”

Peter “As petrol prices soar, more cycling is a good idea for everyone!”

Jacquie “I worry every time my sons walk home to Saffron Walden from the station”

Simon “This is long overdue and will make a big difference to walkers, cyclists AND motorists alike.”

James “There are also motorists in favour of these safety improvements which demonstrate the cross-community need and support for this.”

Nicholas “Many people cycle to the station and I am amazed that nobody has been seriously hurt.”

John “I have been amazed for 30 years than nothing has been done to improve access on this route for cyclists”

Edward “I very much support a cycle route to the station as there are already cycle racks provided but no safe means of getting there from Saffron Walden. The station car park is expensive and the short 2 mile car journey is poluting and causes excessive wear on car engines. The existing bus service is useless outside Mon. – Fri, peak hours and seems only to cater for the London trains. Travellers to/from Cambridge usually to wait.”

Mike “This proposal may also help to reduce the parking congestion at the station, which I always dread.”

Philip “I support this because it would provide an ideal safe cycle route into Saffron Walden from the village hinterland to the west.”

Sue “I understand there are plenty of facilities at the station once you get there but no way of getting to the station safely”

Sue “I am a keen cyclist and lead groups of cyclists for Cambridge U3A. We often cycle from Audley End and the first stretch of road from the station to Saffron Walden is not safe, which is a pity because from Saffron Walden there are some excellent round cycle trips.”

Andrew “There has been an urgent need for a safe cycling and walking route between the town and the station for years. It is only a matter of time before a pedestrian or cyclist is killed on the road, unless safety measures are introduced.”

Diana “On a dark winters night – through misunderstanding of arrangements – with a vehicle passing in the opposite direction – I nearly killed my SON on that road as he walked home!”

Robert “We need safer cycle routes around our towns and villages which are safer for children as well as adults.”

 David “The road is too dangerous to walk along. I have tried and it is frightening”

Peter “I find it amazing that a pedestrian / cycle path isn’t already in place between the town and the station”

Vera “I don’t have a car, and frequently walk from the train station to Saffron Walden, connecting with the public footpath along the road on the left. Please do make a cycle/pedestrian pathway along Wenden Rd”

Graham “I have stopped using the shops and pubs in Saffron Walden as the cycle journey from my office in Wendens Ambo is terrifying.”

Nick “This development is long over-due and action has been promised on a number of occasions. It would vastly increase the safety and number of cyclists commuting to Audley End station.”

Sean “I have lived in Walden for 10 years and in this time there has periodically been talk and promises of putting in place a pedestrian and cycle route from town to the station. Apart from the environmental and health benefits of such a development, the safety argument is irrefutable. The fact that local Council representatives have repeatedly not addressed this issue is in my view a disgrace and amounts to gross negligence of duty.”

Lee “Since the extortionate prices charged for parking at Audley End station, more and more people are cycling to the station and it is only a matter of time before someone has an accident”


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