Councillor Hockley – The Canal and Cyclists

Over the years I have made my thoughts about the Titchfield canal AND  path
very clear and have sp;ent a considerable amount of time ensuring that A/.
The Canal is cleaned out and B/ that sufficient money was made available
from HCC in order to substantially improve the canal path.  I managed to
obtain much assistance from Messrs Amey who on one day alone provided 45
volunteers who I spent the entire day cleaning out the canal and allowing
the water proper flow.  At a latter date we spent a further day cleaning out
the canal from under the A27 Road to the bridge at East Street.  This
exercise much improved the water flow and for the first time in many years
homes whose gardens ran down to the canal were not flooded.  The Canal path
which had been little more than a muddy track was totally replaced and is
now a very satisfactory path way  that allows walkers, children and family
groups to enjoy the canal.  Equally important is the fact that some 500
Water Voles now live in and around the canal and I am advised that many have
created homes under the new path.

Within the news and views paper, TITCHFIELD MATTERS I have read with
interest the views of people I respect within the village, residents such as
Chris Walker,  Tim. Mason, Clive, Fil Bower and indeed others.  The canal is
indeed a  path,  a place too walk, not to ride bikes at silly speeds I have
also read the views of those who who would open up the path to cyclists and
I wont go into the damage they could and do cause.  I am delighted that we
have sensible thinking from the Chris Walkers of this world.  Good on you
Chris!

As a final thought let me say that I will fight tooth and nail the
suggestion that bikes be allowed on the canal path,  The Titchfield Forum
really should consider the sense of some of their more outrageous
suggestions and the damage they could  cause.   Thy might simply prefer to
take note of the sign’ s that ban bikes

Best regards

Geoff Hockley
County Councillor

4 thoughts on “Councillor Hockley – The Canal and Cyclists

  1. Gloria Hunt

    I feel it important to note that the Forum is neutral and has published the opinions of many different people on how to improve the canal path. The Titchfield Haven have expressed the opinion that they would welcome the path fully extended and upgraded to the sea. However, they have said that funding would only be forthcoming if the path was for walking and cycling. Again this is their opinion and not one coming from the Forum.

  2. Aaron Meredith

    I would like to state that I use the canal to walk my dog, often with my children and a pushchair. At no time have I encountered anybody cycling in an anti-social manner along the path, but the canal path is currently a footpath, therefore cycling isn’t permitted.

    However, I find it unacceptable that an elected councillor should state that they will fight tooth and nail against a possible usage change. If the general consensus of his local electorate was to allow a cycle path to be built alongside the footpath, then I would expect any self-respecting councillor to abide by the opinion.
    If, however, the verdict was that a cycle path is incompatible then of course it should not be considered.

    The effort put in by Mr Hockley and other volunteers is to be lauded and is much appreciated by all who use the canal path, but one group of opinions do not (necessarily) represent a whole, and if it was possible I’m not sure anybody should find complaint in a safe, traffic free route for cyclists (who are frequently children too) to travel to the seafront. Posbrook lane is not really ideal for children cyclists.

    As a final note, I find it also disingenuous for Mr Hockley to opine against people presenting their opinion on a public forum. That is exactly their right and he should be attentive to ensuring their ability to do so without criticism. I believe the Titchfield Forum has been an excellent idea. All told, I’m disappointed that the local elections were conducted prior to me reading this post, as a conservative it would have left me with a tougher decision.

    Aaron Meredith

  3. Karen Postle

    Thank goodness for this! While it’s great, and much safer for cyclists, to have off- road cycling, the path is too narrow to safely accommodate walkers and cyclists.
    No matter how courteous the cyclists are –
    and most are – it’s simply not safe. I suggest we look in a different place and see what can be done about making roads safer for cyclists/creating off-road spaces.

    Please can I also suggest a change of topic as I’m sure I am not the only person fed up with having to watch my step on the path to avoid dog poo – not to mention the delightful tree ornaments left by the most irresponsible dog walkers! And before you post, yes I do like dogs and yes I do know this is a minority and no I don’t want to ban them!

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