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Let’s go: a cycling network for Epping Forest

EFTAG looked at the Epping Forest Cycling Action Plan (PDF) published by Essex County Council and evaluated the numerous routes it proposed. We set ourselves four criteria for choosing the routes to prioritise. These were routes with:

  1. Close proximity to schools;
  2. Close proximity to transport hubs;
  3. Close proximity to shops and facilities; or that
  4. Links between all of the above.

From this we selected a priority network of routes which offer excellent interconnection and utility as a network, transforming the cycleability of Loughton, Debden, Theydon Bois, Buckhurst Hill, and Chigwell, and encouraging cycling as a mode of transport between these settlements – not merely within them.

Each route offers significant impact on its own, improving walkability and cyclability of its route, and improving wheelchair accessibility too. As a network, however, they’d be a substantial move towards a future where the people of Epping Forest are far less reliant on the car than they are today.

A map showing 16 cycle routes across Loughton, Buckhurst Hill and Chigwell, connecting also to Theydon Bois. A description follows the image.
Core cycling routes for Loughton, Chigwell, Buckhurst Hill and Theydon Bois

The routes shown here should not be viewed as an exhaustive list: there are routes unserved, places unreached and people left behind, but they are, in our view as experienced local cyclists and as residents, the best place to begin.

The routes are (numbered using the Cycling Action Plan scheme where possible):

We’ve produced a Cycle Network flyer (PDF) for our top 6 routes, and we’ve prepared a more detailed plan (PDF) for those routes too. Our map is also available on Google Maps.

Want to help us make these routes a reality? Get in touch