RESIDENTS have hit out at a new 'expensive’, near £3m-a-mile cycle lane that is ‘underused’ by cyclists. 

An Echo FOI has revealed the new two-mile cycle stretch of Wimborne Road East in Ferndown cost the taxpayer £7.75m to build so far – expected to rise to £7.9m once everything has been totaled up. 

Spanning from Trickett’s Cross to Canford Bottom, the road has new wide paths for pedestrians and cyclists, bus stops with shelters featuring information boards and upgraded traffic light junctions. 

But some residents have questioned whether it is good value for money.

Bournemouth Echo: Cycle lane in Wimborne Road East, Ferndown

Retired shop fitter Graham Barber said the costs of the cycle lane cannot be justified “because there are not enough cyclists using them”. 

The 73-year-old said: “We can see the cycle lane from our lounge and the amount of cyclists that we see going up and down it is so little. 

“I’m originally from London and I have spoken to a lot of people back there about the cycle lane here and all of them cannot believe the costs for them here. 

“But the problem is the design of it: there’s a foot-wide bit against the kerb and cycle way that is just earth and they can’t put a machine there to tidy it and nothing is ever done about it.” 

As well as this, the road’s speed limit has been cut by 10mph down to 30mph. 

Bournemouth Echo: Cycle lane in Wimborne Road East, Ferndown

Tony Joynson, 64, argued there needs to be more space for cars “because that’s the majority”. 

He said: “You hardly ever see any cyclists using it, sometimes you see them using the road, so what’s the point in the council putting all this money into the cycle lanes?” 

Elle, who lives in Wimborne Road East, said the biggest issue with the cycle lanes is not the costs but the maintenance. 

“They need to be regularly swept because twigs and leaves and stones get left on them and it can make cycling dangerous,” she said.  

Bournemouth Echo: Cycle lane in Wimborne Road East, Ferndown

But she also hit out at “dangerous and aggressive” drivers, adding: “There have been times when I’ve been cycling and had people shouting at me. 

“I’m usually quite tough and ignore it, but sometimes it does get to you.” 

Dorset Council was asked if they had any figures on how many cyclists have used the lanes but did not provide any.  

A spokeswoman said: “The work in Wimborne Road East is funded by central government. It is not only a route for cyclists, but provides a safe route for pedestrians, including children getting to a from school, and users of mobility aids.” 

Once fully completed, Dorset Council has said there will be more than four miles of accessible travel route running from Wimborne to Ferndown providing “quick, safe and active ways” of travelling.  

Later this year, the final section of the route – between Cobham Road and Ameysford Road – will be finished.