How will we Get About?
In 2015 Okeford Fitzpaine started to develop a Neighbourhood Plan. One common concern in response to our first questionnaire was pedestrians and cyclists don’t feel safe using Castle Lane and Shillingstone Lane.
Okeford Fitzpaine is now facing a significant population growth. In recent years we’ve lost two big employers and the poultry houses lie dormant with development proposals being prepared for each of the sites they occupied. We are now at risk of becoming a ‘dormitory village’ with residents commuting daily elsewhere and the consequent risk from busier roads. We need to address this before it becomes fact.
Our Government encourages sustainable and active travel in particular, with the many benefits it brings to each of us eg physical and mental health, fitter people, less air pollution, lower road repair costs, independence for children, to name but the obvious. Cycle routes and footpaths are encouraged.
What can We Do ?
Despite its rural location, Okeford Fitzpaine is well placed for a sustainable and active transport link to our surrounding towns and villages with further benefits that will:
- renew its historic ties with Child Okeford and Shillingstone (Shilling Ockford) known as ‘The Three Okefords’
- provide a link to North Dorset Trailway which currently stretches from Blandford to Sturminster Newton – a sustainable and beautiful route for pedestrians and non-motorised vehicles along the old Somerset and Dorset Railway
- encourage more people to travel by active means by improving their perception of safety
- increase footfall into our village to use our community assets eg pubs, shops, village halls
- provide attractive access to leisiure facilities eg Shllingstone Station, Stur and Blandford Leisure Centres
A Ready-Made Solution is Little Lane known to many as Mill Lane, it runs from our village to the Child Okeford junction on the A357 with access at the new triangle carpark to the North Dorset Trailway. Little Lane is an unclassified highway owned by Dorset County Council but fallen into disrepair through lack of use except by agricultural vehicles.
What we Propose to Do
Reinstate the surface to a condition usable by cyclists and pedestrians all year round. In some locations the surface will need to be reinforced to prevent damage by agricultural vehicles needing to cross it.
A crossing point will be needed on the A357 and speed reduction enforced there and at the Shillingstone Lane junction with Little Lane
How will we Do It?
We have the backing of Dorset County Council and adjoining landowners but need your help with time and resources, team effort and determination to make a change for our own and our village’s future.
Are you with us?