WORK has begun on a £480,000 scheme to provide a new cycle and walking route between Trowbridge and Hilperton.

The work along the A361 Hilperton Road will close the road for up to one week and will lead to up to ten weeks of traffic disruption and delays.

Signs have been put up around Hilperton Road to notify motorists of the closure.

Hilperton Road will be closed for one week from January 10, 2022 to allow Wiltshire Council to install the combined pedestrian and cycle route. Motorists are also being advised of 10 weeks of delays around the A361.

Cllr Dr Mark McClelland, Cabinet Member for Transport, said: "These new walking and cycling facilities will make it easier and safer for people to choose to walk and cycle for short journeys rather than take their car.

"This is particularly helpful for the three schools in the area, as it will give children and their parents a safer route to and from school on foot, by bike or on scooters.

"We know that not everyone can leave the car at home to walk or cycle, but for those that can, this new route will help.

"Creating safer and more convenient routes for walking and cycling, particularly for shorter journeys, will help our residents to live healthier lives, reduce the number of vehicles on our roads, lower carbon emissions and improve air quality."

"Work will start in January 2022, and we look forward to the new facilities being complete by the spring."

A temporary cycling facility that was previously installed on the road as a social distancing response to the Covid-19 pandemic will be removed and will be replaced with a more permanent solution for a larger section of the road.

The scheme will include widening the footway to create a separate footway and cycle track for pedestrians and cyclists, plus signal-controlled toucan crossings. This will be achieved while still allowing ample room for two-way traffic to move freely along the road.

The proposed three-metre wide cycle track, which runs alongside the existing two-metre wide footpath, begins at the County Way roundabout, with a new toucan crossing at that end of Hilperton Road enabling pedestrians and cyclists to cross safely.

At this point, the route links to Bellefield Crescent to the north, and the existing shared use path to County Way to the south. The cycle track then continues along Hilperton Road, with a raised table giving priority to cyclists and walkers across Stancomb Avenue.

Finally, there is a new toucan crossing close to Quarterway Lane, and the lane will be resurfaced to make it suitable for cyclists.

The new facilities will make it easier and safer for parents and children to make journeys to and from Silverwood School, Paxcroft Primary School and Bellefield Primary School on foot, by bike or on a scooter.

They also help to link with the residential areas to the north and south of Hilperton Road as part of the Trowbridge Town Cycle Network.

The cycle track also improves pedestrian safety by removing cyclists from the pedestrian space on the footway, while improving access into Bellefield Crescent will enable the route to be used by wheelchair users.

The work will include the resurfacing of the road and will be mainly paid for using housing developer contributions.