Rangers at a reservoir beauty spot are encouraging cyclists and walkers to work in tandem this summer – to help make sure that all visitors can enjoy the paths around Carsington Water safely.
Visitor centre manager, Dan Taberner, said: “During the summer holidays we welcome many thousands of visitors to Carsington. There are lots of fun things to do and – although it’s a busy time of year – there is space for everyone, as long as all our visitors are considerate of each other’s needs.”
Carsington has an eight-mile circular track, which is three metres wide, the same width as other bridleways across the country.
The route is designed to be used by walkers, cyclists and horse riders. And the rangers have split the track wherever possible, which means cyclists can use one path and walkers can use the other.
Dan said: “We’re encouraging visitors to care about each other’s needs – so, if you’re a cyclist approaching a walker, make sure they know that you’re there – slow down, and if you have a bell sound it, that way people aren’t surprised. It’s the same if you’re on foot, if you see a cyclist, let them know you’re aware and give them room to pass you.
“We’re all there to enjoy the countryside; we just need to show respect and help to keep each other safe.
“We don’t want to start policing Carsington’s paths – they’re the same as any other public bridleway, we want people to enjoy their trip and have fun safely.
“We’re pleased to say that the majority of our visitors are happy to work together here at the reservoir.”
In June, the cycle hire centre held a Cycle Safety Challenge, together with Ashbourne Cycle Club, a local repair specialist – Cyclewirks.
The event was designed to teach riders about bike safety and consideration for other road and path users.
Dan said: “Despite the weather, we had around 50 bikers take part and chatted to hundreds of visitors about safe cycling.
“We hope to repeat the event next year and it is also being trialled at Draycote Water in Warwickshire later in the summer.”