BH Active Travel is backing the gate closure at Poole Park and disputed suggestions that BCP Council is 'anti-car'.

The organisation and its 1,400 members are throwing their weight behind the council in its trial closure of Poole Park's Whitecliff Road gate. 

A spokesperson stated the group believes the gate closure does not disadvantage disabled people and that they still have complete access to areas of the park. 

The closure of Poole Park's Whitecliff Road has caused a large amount of controversy with protests held over its trialled closure. 

On January 20, more than  200 people gathered at the gate to argue against the move by the council. 

In a written statement, chair of BH Active Travel, Lucie Allen said: "We believe the benefits to all park users and those commuting through the park sustainably, of reducing motor traffic in the park, particularly through traffic, outweigh the [negatives] of allowing through-traffic at Whitecliff gate.

"We believe that the closure is in line with many BCP policies and strategies, which BCP officers and councillors should be looking to, when making strategic decisions such as this one."

BH Active Travel disputed allegations that the council is 'anti-car' and claims that other roads have stayed open following similar council trials. 

Keyhole Bridge was closed and then reverted to being kept open. BH Active Travel says the majority of the public supported the closure of the bridge route.

In her written letter, Ms Allen stated that the decision is in line with nine different BCP policies and strategies. 

This includes BCP's Plan Vision for Poole Park, a £2.7 million National Lottery Heritage Fund which has aims including to 'make it harder to drive through the park.'

Ms Allen said: "Allowing through-traffic, at the volumes experienced before the trial closure of the Whitecliff Gate, does nothing to support any of the polices and strategies of BCP Council, in particular the Plan Vision for Poole Park."

At a protest at the weekend Poole resident Sharon Hunt said: "It is important that we keep making our voices heard.

"All we want is to keep the right to be able to drive through the park.

"The closure is unnecessary; there has never been an incident involving a vehicle here."