As restrictions subside, staying active is as important as ever for those looking to ease themselves back into normality.
For people looking to get active, there are a variety of cycling routes on offer in Salford. From inner-city secrets to relaxing rides around Salford’s greenbelt, there are many to choose from.
The Bee Network
Encompassing Greater Manchester, ‘The Bee Network’ is an ideal starting point for any active traveller. It is a plan to ‘revolutionize travel across the city region’, looking to make active travel a priority for commuters.
Unveiled in 2018, it is a project that looks to change routes and roads so that it is safer for cyclists and walkers. It is delivering new segregated cycle paths, known as ‘Beeways’, as well as promising pedestrian prioritised areas.
With around £500m worth of development already being carried out, it is part of a decade-long plan to increase the number of cycling and walking routes in the Greater Manchester area. The total plan will be worth £1.5bn and looks to create over 1,800 miles of routes to connect ‘every neighbourhood, school, high street and public transport hub in the city-region’.
A Seasoned Cyclist
To find out more, I spoke to admin of the ‘Salford Cycling and Walking Forum’, Andrew Fisher:
“The Bee Network was brought about by Chris Boardman a couple of years ago – it’s really, really good. We’ve had four years with Andy Burnham as GM mayor and we’re starting to see the plan come to fruition.
“We’ve created on-road protected cycle routes across Salford. If you come back in three years’ time, you’ll see an expansive network covering the city centre, all the way out to places like Walkden and Irlam.”
Coordinating transport as an organiser for the group, Andrew also spoke of the benefits of cycling:
“Many councils have declared pollution levels too high. On top of this, congestion has become bad in many areas.
“Cycling, on top of offsetting these issues, is a great way to keep fit.”
Mr Fisher describes Salford as ‘having lots of great cycle routes’, and managing a group about inner city cycling I’d be remiss if I didn’t ask for a few recommendations.
Routes for you
One of his personal favourites, Andrew talks about the Roe Green Loopline. Running from the border at Bolton all the way to Monton, the 7.2km traffic free path
offers a quaint inner-city cycle. The route offers ‘good views’ alongside a disused railway and is perfect for pictures.
It runs through Walkden and Worsley with frequent access points, but whilst calm in the weekdays, it is ‘well used’ on weekends. Keen cyclists can connect this route with the Linnyshaw Loopline as they crossover by the M61 for a longer ride.
Another relaxing route is the Port Salford Greenway, a 3km route from Worsley to Peel Green. Combining quiet streets with traffic free paths, smooth surfaces and flat gradients make it a suitable commute for anyone.
It offers bucolic views as it follows the Worsley brook. As the route continues, it also dips into the Brookhouse community woods as well as the cemetery.
The Swinton Greenway is an in-construction route that runs between Monton and Swinton. For now, the majority is unpaved, however adventurous riders with bikes suitable for off-road will find it a joy all the same.
Running from Manchester Road to Monton Road, it also skirts the Swinton Park Golf Club.
Andrew also recommends the Ellenbrook Loopline. It connects the Roe Green Loopline near Worsley Leisure Centre to the Leigh guided busway navigating through wooded areas.
All routes are suitable for all abilities and can be read about on TfGM’s active travel page.