Rea River Trail Mill Lane Upgrade

Upgrading the Rea River Trail from just after the Mill Lane railway bridge to the Mill Walk was be finished in October, 2008.

A 2m+ wide tarmaced path through the wooded area next to the narrow (parked cars) Mill Lane will make the Trail much better. It would be even better if continued to the cul-de-sac at the end of Mill Lane but the Rea River is probably too close at the Mill Walk end.

Fantastic, now we just need the truly horrible Tessall Lane section sorted as part of the Longbridge Area Action Plan.

Congratulations to Birmingham City Council, great stuff.

BUT, splutter, cough, vomit: they're put the barriers at either end. So it'll be stick to the road?

Correction: rode the new section in November. The gates were easy to get through on the Trice QNT and the trail was super. If a trice can get through, presumably anything other than a big motorcycle should be fine? Also fencing off the previously open green space is naff.

Barriers have also been errected further down the Trail. Met a man on a mobility cart who got through with moderate difficulty and pointed out that there were several side entry points within a hundred metres with no barriers.

The comparison with the Benelux countries is informative: they have more cycling, very few barriers and a really positive attitude to sharing roads and paths.

Where does our obsession with restricting people come from and might it aggravate the problem? It would be really interesting to understand the psychology of those who prescribe the barriers and it's effect on those who use the controlled space.

I seem to remember an article by Madeline Bunting reviewing the sociology & pyschology literature about powerlessness as a driver for antisocial behaviour.