A safe, traffic-free route for walkers and cyclists has been created between two East Lancashire towns. 

The route, between Nelson and Brierfield takes in Lomeshaye Industrial Estate, one of Pendle’s biggest employment sites.

Called Pendle Water Bridleway, the new route runs on both sides of Pendle Water, creating a loop and has easy connections to the canal towpath at Clitheroe Road in Brierfield and Norfolk Street in Nelson.

Councillor Asjad Mahmood, leader of Pendle Council, said: “As well as being a great way to commute locally, it’s also a fantastic leisure route for walkers, cyclists and those on horseback.

“If you haven’t already used it, come and try it out.”

The route was funded from the European Structural Investment Fund, ESIF, as part of the wider extension works to the industrial estate.

The work included planting native hedges and trees, such as black poplar, which thrive by riverbanks.

The new bridleway was showcased at a guided bike ride event in October led by Go Velo, Pendle’s very own cycling providers, starting at Nelson’s Bus and Rail Interchange.

Currently the route to the canal towpath to access Pendle Water Bridleway from the Interchange is not easy.

But Pendle Council has received Nelson Town Deal funding to improve the route through its Accessible Nelson scheme.

Tricia Wilson, project co-ordinator (engineering), said: “The addition of Pendle Water Bridleway is fantastic but it’s clear that we need to do more to make Nelson a more accessible town for everyone including those travelling on foot, by bike and car.

“The guided cycle ride showed how the Accessible Nelson scheme will improve connectivity across Nelson and Brierfield with better access to the new Pendle Water Bridleway via the towpath.”

Stephen Barnes, chair of Nelson Town Deal, said: "Accessible Nelson will ultimately create improvements to the road infrastructure which are much needed.

“We’re working with Lancashire County Council to improve the traffic flow by looking at lower traffic speeds, roundabouts to replace traffic lights, wider shared-use paths and tree planting to make the area greener and more attractive.”

This is Nelson, the arts and culture strand of the Nelson Town Deal, also took part in the guided ride to showcase some of their projects, which included colourful signage for the route and an upcoming pop-up space at Lomeshaye Park.