The Padiham Greenway has won a prestigious national award for ‘the best transformation of land’.
The traffic-free greenway, created on the disused railway line that runs between Rosegrove and Padiham, has won praise from environmental charity Sustrans.
The whole area is in memory of the fallen in the wars and it is such a special placeCoun. Bob Clark
The Friends of the Greenway were presented with their award at their meeting at Padiham Green Primary School this week.
“We were shocked as it was unexpected but it is a great honour,” said Padiham Councillor Bob Clark, a member of the Friends of the Greenway.
The Greenway won a previous award in 2011 when it was given the ‘Exemplary Initiative’ prize by the European Greenways Association.
“We had to go to France to collect that one but they came to us for this!” continued Coun. Clark. “It is nice the hard work of all the volunteers is being recognised.
“When we thought about changing the abandoned space around 12 years ago some people were against it.
“But now Padiham Greenway is well used by commuters including cyclists, runners, school children and walkers.
“We have the miner’s bench on it and the greenway leads to Memorial Park which leads to the Arbories Memorial Ground at Padiham Football Club. The whole area is in memory of the fallen in the wars and it is such a special place.”
The awards, run by sustainable transport charity Sustrans, highlights the very best projects from across the country that have helped to form the National Cycle Network since it was created by the charity 20 years ago. The Padiham greenway forms part of route 685 of the National Cycle Network.
Rosslyn Colderley, North West Regional Director for Sustrans, said: “The Padiham Greenway is an inspiring example of how investment in walking and cycling can transform both places and communities. That’s why we’re calling on the government to provide consistent long-term funding for cycling and walking in the same way that already exists for our roads and railways. A Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy that contains a long-term vision and targets and at least 5% of transport spending. This will bring quality walking and cycling routes to everyone’s doorstep.”