Sustrans improves the Coast and Castles route around Blyth in Northumberland, England

Posted by James Derrick on 12 January 2013 in English (English)

After going out and about on two wheels around Blyth, I noticed that the Coast and Castles long distance cycle route, NCN1 has moved. It no longer threads North West through the South Beach estate and across the River Blyth with the A189, and follows the coast. View NE from the new NCN1 towards Blyth Harbour

New shared use paths go past Blyth Harbour and through Ridley Park, then West along a new Hairpin Greenway (dedicated to the late Laura Ferguson). Sustrans have invested a lot in clear signage, down to having a ‘Turn Back’ notice if you follow the old route past Blyth Asda! Start of New Route sign

As you’d expect, I’ve surveyed the new routes and mapped the changes in OpenStreetMap with just the big relation change to move the NCN1 route over to the new ways pending. CycleStreets still beats Sustrans own slippy map, IMHO.

The new route is great for long distance cycle tourism, and has improved foot paths into shared use cycleways. This route is more focused on recreation and with the excellent signage, will be much easier to follow than threading through housing estates.

For my regular commuting to Newbiggin by the Sea, I still wish that the ‘Cramlington Connection’ project and the Cycleway to Nowhere along the A189 hadn’t ended in the wilderness.

Location: Blyth, Bebside, Northumberland, North East England, England, United Kingdom

Comment from Richard on 12 January 2013 at 22:16

That’s terrific news. When we cycled Coast & Castles last spring, the Blyth section was the blemish on an otherwise very enjoyable route.

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