Sustainable tourism in the UK. You may be familiar with Britain’s National Cycle Network of the Sustrans Charity and EuroVelo, the EU-initiative to develop attractive long-distance cycle routes for sustainable cycling holidays. These are both significant initiatives but have their limitations. These initiatives are very dependent on local authorities for approval and development of the routes. In Britain, fussy landowners and lack of budget or interest by the local authorities can block new route sections for decades, resulting in a very fragmented cycle network.
To link up what already exists into one attractive long-distance traffic-calmed cycle route, we have developed our own London-Land’s End Cycle Route. This brand finally provides an overall identity to the many beautiful cycle routes southern England already has. The route has a great appeal to international visitors, taking leisure cyclists by many famous English landmarks, from the Tower Bridge in London to Stonehenge and from Cheddar Gorge to the surf beaches of Newquay in Cornwall. Very special is the Thames Valley Route (taking you nearly completely traffic-free out of London!), the Devon Coast to Coast Route, Camel Trail, Strawberry Line and Bristol and Bath Railway Path; all fantastic examples of how cycling should be!
The London-Land’s End Cycle Route comes as a handy-sized pocket-guidebook (for on the bicycle’s handlebars) with accompanying GPS-tracks for mobile phones and GPS-devices. The independently produced book contains full route directions, maps (with various scales for urban and rural areas), visitor information and listings of B&Bs, campsites, hostels and bike repair shops on the way. Five hundred local venues are listed with full contact details; pubs and cafes on the road are listed by symbols and with mileage information.
Continuity and quality issues of UK-cycle routes are overcome with creative and satisfying route alternatives, genuinely providing a continuous traffic-calmed route! Connectivity is also a crucial aspect of the London-Land’s End Cycle Route project. For example, 60 railway stations are listed in the book, allowing the public to take bikes on trains and to cycle shorter route sections. Also, visitors from the continent can start cycling from the Dover and Harwich ferry ports via additional routes linking to London. For those who wish to continue cycling in France (for example to cycle around the English Channel), another connecting way to Plymouth ferry port is included too. The book also features extensive information for the international visitor wishing to start cycling in London and on how to take the bicycles on the train back to London from any given point on the route.
Susan Brown, who lives in Gland, Switzerland, road-tested our brand-new route during the summer of 2013 when she and her husband took their teenage children on a last-minute cycling holiday to England.
“The book was great,” says Susan. “The maps, directions segments, visitor information and phone numbers for accommodations were all used. We relied on the book completely, and it never let us down.”
To find out more, please visit our designated website www.london-landsendcycleroutebook.com. We look forward to seeing you around on your bicycle!