On the western side of Cardiff, the Ely Trail is a circa 7 mile largely traffic-free walking and cycling route. It winds its way from Cardiff Bay and Penarth at the coast to St Fagans north west of the city.
The trail is just a short hop from Cardiff Bay, Penarth, Llandough, Leckwith, Caerau, Victoria Park, Canton, Riverside, Ely, Pentrebane, St Fagans or Michaelston-super-Ely. Its route largely follows the River Ely and should provide easy access to the river, open countryside, wildlife, St Fagans National History Museum and all these neighbourhoods. But there’s a problem: Barriers.
Of the three main entrances (Ferry Road, Penarth Road and Dunleavy Drive) to the Ely Trail in the Grangemoor Park area, motorbikes and illegal e-bikes are likely to be able to enter/exit at all three, whereas law-abiding legitimate users with cargo bikes, bike trailers, tandem bikes, tricycles, wheelchairs, pushchairs (etc) may well be restricted to a single entrance/exit with no through route. This renders it ineffective as an active travel route, possibly perpetuates anti-social behaviour, and flouts the Equality Act 2010.
At Cardiff Cycle City we’d like to see access reworked to provide easy unfettered access for all. Not only would this encourage those wishing to travel actively, but, we know from our dealings with organisations like Sustrans and Police forces, that improving access makes routes busier, which in turn tends to drive down instances of illegal use and antisocial behaviour.
Current campaign status:
We have an ongoing dialogue with Cardiff Councillor and Cabinet Member for Transport and Strategic Planning Dan De’Ath on this issue.
Councillor De’Ath has committed to engage with colleagues in Parks and local ward members to explore options to improve access to the Ely Trail at this location.
As stakeholders, Cardiff Cycle City have offered to get involved in any discussions of access options going forwards.