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27 September 2007

Cyclists 'Connect 2' Bridgewater Way

A photo opportunity took place earlier today at Sale Waterside to highlight the Bridgewater Way’s role in the Sustrans Connect 2 Big Lottery Fund Bid.

Local cyclists and representatives from the Bridgewater Way Trust and Trafford Council gathered at the Waterside Plaza to encourage local support for the Connect 2 bid, which was one of many photo opportunities and events taking place around the country today.

The Connect 2 multi million pound lottery bid incorporates 79 local schemes across the country, and will ultimately be decided by a public TV vote in December. The Bridgewater Way is one of these 79 schemes and if Connect 2 is successful will receive funding for works to the Sale section of the Bridgewater Way to be undertaken. The funding would particularly concentrate on improving the quality and number of access points to the route as well as improving the surface of the towpath itself.

Just over 58,000 people live within half a mile of the Sale area of the Bridgewater Way that would receive the funding, with almost a quarter of a million people living within two miles.

Councillor Pennington, Chairman of the Bridgewater Canal Trust said, “The Bridgewater Way is delighted to be part of Sustrans Connect 2 Big Lottery Fund bid. The funding we would receive would once again allow people to access the canal side more readily and enjoy the beauty of the canal. We would ask local people to visit the Connect 2 website www.sustransconnect2.org.uk to find out how and when they can support Connect 2 this December”.

Cllr Ken Weston of Trafford Council said: “This funding would be of great benefit to people both living in and visiting Trafford, enhancing their experience of one of the most beautiful features of our borough which is nearly 250 years-old. I would urge everybody to back The Bridgewater Way and give their support to the bid.”

Sustrans’ Chief Executive John Grimshaw explains, “Of all the schemes short-listed for the Big Lottery Fund's Living Landmarks: The Peoples Millions, Connect2 is the only one that will make a big difference to people living in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, enabling them to reduce their carbon footprint and get active.

“By making it easier to travel for local journeys on foot and by bike, Connect2 would bring huge potential health and environmental benefits, not just for local communities, but for the whole of the UK, now - and for generations to come. I urge people to support Connect2.”

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