•  and 

Type of content:


21 September 2022

Ambitious cycling and walking plans for Penrith, Workington and Whitehaven launched!

Cumbria County Council has launched ambitious plans for new safe cycling and walking routes in the county.

The Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIPs) for Penrith, Workington and Whitehaven are the second to be published, following the plans for  Barrow, Carlisle and Kendal which were published in July 2022.

The LCWIPs identify and prioritise cycling and walking improvements at a local level, with a focus on routes that are used for everyday shorter journeys, such as going to work, school or the shops. The aim is to encourage more people to travel on foot and by cycle for the benefit of people’s health and the environment.

By providing coherent, safe and direct infrastructure that connects people to the places where they need to be, cycling and walking is more likely to become the natural choice for shorter journeys.  

The views and suggestions from the public, stakeholders and delivery partners have been central to the process of developing the LCWIPs and the county council thank all those that took the time to provide feedback on the emerging plans. Whilst the LCWIPs set out a framework for the improvements, they will continue to develop over time and will be updated to reflect changing priorities and local needs. 

Having an LCWIP in place is key to unlocking Government funding and developer contributions to build the infrastructure needed. The council will look to secure funding over the next 15 years to provide new safe routes for cyclists and walkers across Cumbria’s main towns and city.

The LCWIPs were approved by the Council’s Local Committees during July to September and following this received endorsement and support from Eden District Council, Allerdale Borough Council and Copeland Borough Council.

The LCWIPs along with their accompanying technical reports and consultation summaries can be accessed on the Council’s Cycling and Walking webpage at: https://www.cumbria.gov.uk/planning-environment/cyclingandwalking 

The networks identified in the plans reflect the importance of connectivity across the towns with the aim of increasing active travel and reduce car journeys. Key aspects of the network include:

For Penrith:

  • Improved walking routes for pedestrians of all abilities within the town centre;
  • Improved cycling and walking routes that link to the development of the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine project, which could provide direct and improved links eastward into Penrith’s rural hinterland to support east-west cycling and walking journeys.
  • Improved longer distance cycling connections into Penrith from villages such as Plumpton, Eamont Bridge and Stainton.

For Workington:

  • Improvements to the National Cycle Network (NCN72) Hadrian’s Cycleway which forms the core network for cycling in the town. Improved connectivity from Workington town centre and the railway station to key destinations including the Workington Academy, Lakes Colleges West Cumbria at Lillyhall and to the nearby villages of Flimby and Distington.
  • The network also extends east along the Sea-to-Sea cycleway (NCN71), connecting to the Derwent Forest development site, emphasising the importance the National Cycle Network plays in the Workington LCWIP.
  • Improved access to green spaces and the coast, providing leisure-based route options around the edge of Workington.

For Whitehaven:

  • The National Cycle Network (NCN72) Hadrian’s Cycleway forms the core spine of the network in Whitehaven. The Whitehaven LCWIP incorporates the NCN72 providing improved connectivity between residential areas to key destinations such as the town centre, Westlake’s Science and Technology Park and the towns two railway stations.
  • Important connectivity linking the NCN spine route to residential areas, as well as education facilities and the West Cumberland Hospital.
  • Improved longer distance cycling connections into Whitehaven from communities such as Parton and Lowca to the north of the town, and St Bees to the south. With many rural communities within cycling distance relying on being able to access services within Whitehaven.

Cllr Keith Little, Cumbria County Council Cabinet member for Highways and Transport, said:

“We want to encourage more people to take up walking and cycling within the county, to improve connectivity between communities, boost health and wellbeing, and tackle climate change.

“Through the delivery of the LCWIPs we want cycling and walking to become the preferred way to travel for shorter journeys. Good infrastructure is key to achieving this and the LCWIPs will ensure the right conditions are put in place to encourage people to cycle and walk more often.

“Expanding on the active travel network will also help to achieve an ambition set by the Zero Carbon Cumbria Partnership, for Cumbria to become the first carbon neutral county in the UK by 2037.

“I am grateful that the district councils in Penrith, Workington and Whitehaven have supported these plans, and we will now investigate funding to make these plans a reality.

“I would like to once again thank everyone who has participated in engagement and provided feedback so far."

Cumbria County Council has launched ambitious plans for new safe cycling and walking routes in the county.