The Two Tunnels Greenway is a shared use path for walking and cycling in Bath, Somerset, England.[2] The route links National Cycle Route 24 south of Bath with National Cycle Route 4 in the town centre,[3] and is designated as National Cycle Route 244.[4]

NCN Route 244
Two Tunnels Greenway
The western portal of the Devonshire Tunnel on the Greenway's opening day in 2013
Length3.8 miles (6.1 km)[1]
LocationSomerset, United Kingdom
Established6 April 2013
DesignationUK National Cycle Network
TrailheadsEast Twerton (west) to Midford (east)
Highest pointCombe Down Tunnel, 91.4 m (300 ft)
Lowest pointEast Twerton, 18.8 m (62 ft)
Combe Down Tunnel in 2005

Route edit

The route follows the disused railway trackbed of the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway from East Twerton through the Bath suburb of Oldfield Park to the Devonshire Tunnel. It emerges into Lyncombe Vale before entering the Combe Down Tunnel, and then coming out to cross Tucking Mill Viaduct at Tucking Mill into Midford.[5] The new route links National Cycle Route 4 in Bath and National Cycle Route 24, 2.5 miles (4 km) south of the city.

History edit

NCN24, crossing Midford viaduct, at the south end of the 'Two Tunnels' route, opened in 2005. Sustainable transport charity Sustrans has met with success with its bid for National Lottery funding to start construction of the route.[2] A 'Two Tunnels Steering Group' was established, consisting of the Two Tunnels group, Bath and North East Somerset Council and Sustrans, to ensure the route's successful development.[6]

In June 2009 the major structures were surveyed in preparation for their transfer into the ownership of the local authority from Wessex Water, but the costs of refurbishing the Tunnels exceeded the total project budget then estimated to be £1.9M, with £1M coming from Sustrans.[7] Subsequently, it was agreed that Sustrans should take ownership of the tunnels and be responsible for their refurbishment.

Work began in March 2010 with the excavation of the then-buried western portal of the Devonshire Tunnel, and the project was completed and opened on 6 April 2013.[8] In July 2010, Wessex Water transferred the care of the Devonshire and Combe Down tunnels to Sustrans.[7] Development plans were said to include the installation of motion-sensitive lighting, mobile phone coverage and CCTV within the tunnels,[9] though at the time the Greenway opened, no plans existed for mobile phone coverage in the tunnels.[10]

The Combe Down tunnel reopened on 6 April 2013.[11]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Route 244". Sustrans. Retrieved 9 May 2022.
  2. ^ a b "The Two Tunnels Shared Use Path". Bath & North East Somerset Council. Archived from the original on 7 November 2007. Retrieved 3 October 2007.
  3. ^ "Route 244". Sustrans. Retrieved 9 May 2022.
  4. ^ "Route 244 – Map Sustrans". Sustrans. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
  5. ^ "Two Tunnels path opens in Bath". Ordnance Survey. Archived from the original on 3 July 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
  6. ^ "Statement by Frank Tompson of 'Two Tunnels Group'" (PDF). Bath & North East Somerset Council. 7 March 2007. Archived (PDF) from the original on 17 November 2011.
  7. ^ a b "Railway tunnels handed to cycle charity Sustrans". BBC News. 17 July 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
  8. ^ "Two Tunnels Shared Path". Archived from the original on 26 January 2013. Retrieved 4 February 2013.
  9. ^ "The Two Tunnels Project". Proud of Twerton. April 2008. Archived from the original on 13 May 2008. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
  10. ^ "Mark Annand (Two Tunnels Group secretary) on Twitter".
  11. ^ Morris, Steven (22 March 2013). "Bath's Combe Down railway tunnel to reopen for cyclists and hikers". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 March 2013.

External links edit