Cycle Superhighway: Richardshaw Lane closed for seven weeks


A main road leading to Pudsey is set to close for seven weeks as work continues on building a £29 million cycle superhighway between Leeds and Bradford.

The left hand lane of Richardshaw Lane, at Stanningley Bottom, will be closed from Monday as work begins on building two mini roundabouts as part of the CityConnect cycle scheme. Traffic congestion and delays in the area are inevitable.

Stanningley Bottom
A mini roundabout is to be built here as part of the cycle superhighway scheme. Photo: West Leeds Dispatch

A notice issued by Metro this week says buses heading towards Pudsey will be diverted. Buses running from Pudsey will be able to operate normally on Richardshaw Lane.

Diversions include services 8, 9, 16, 16A from Old Road will turn right onto Bradford Road, left onto Stanningley Bypass before pulling off at the Richardshaw Lane exit, then run on normal route into Pudsey. Services 14 and 91 will run via Swinnow Lane, Swinnow Road and Lowtown.

Check out the Stanningley plans below:

City Connect Leaflet – Stanningley Bottom works

Work is scheduled to finish on Friday, October 2.

One local businessman told the Dispatch that he feared the closure would lead to traffic chaos:

“They are many objections against this and yet it’s still going ahead. Stanningley Bottom is too narrow to really do anything with, let alone build a ‘cyclehighway’. Are the mini roundabouts really justifiable? This work and closure will have a real negative knock on effect for all the local businesses in Stanningley.”

Leeds cycle superhighwayLast month the Dispatch reported how members of the Armley Forum gave a lukewarm response to cycle superhighway work starting on Stanningley Road. In a Dispatch poll, 57% of people said the scheme was a ‘white elephant’.

UPDATED Monday, 12.55pm: When funding was originally announced for the cycle superhighway, Cllr James Lewis, Metro chairman, said the cycle superhighway would “transform” cycling between Leeds and Bradford.

He said the route would link local residents to “employment sites, areas of housing growth and key economic regeneration sites” as well as encourage more people to use their bikes for commuting to and from work. This, in turn, would reduce the dependency on private cars.

The scheme also includes setting up a new organisation to deliver high-profile activities that encourage people to get involved in cycling and lead a healthier lifestyle as a result.

You can read more on the CityConnect scheme here.

What do you think? Have your say in the comments below.



  1. I think this is a waste of public money and that the money could be spent on better things, like better roads and lighting near pedestrian crossings

  2. I sincerely hope that this cycle lane is well used. The vast amount of money it is costing, as well as the disruption, traffic congestion and delays, need to be justified somehow. The knock on effect this has had on many local buisness in a time that economically they can ill afford it, would be an absolute travesty if the lane does not have frequent use.

    • I’m sure it will do. Then there will be fewer motor vehicles on the road so it’s good for everyone. Cyclists are more likely to shop locally too, so local business will benefit.

  3. Disgusting – should not be happening, using tax payers money that the majority are totally against plus aren’t the public being inconvenienced enough long term with Thornbury, Rodley & Horsforth roadworks, the powers that be should try living in this area!!!

    • I think it’s a great waste of money. When my sister and I attended a planning meeting last year I asked if a survey had been done to see how many cyclists had actually used this route on a daily basis the answer was no a survey wasn,t needed??!!!! Ridiculous!! The roads are being dangerously narrowed on both sides and I.m certain there will be a serious accident come winter. Travelling on roads in this area has become a nightmare whether by car or bus and at least half an hour has to be added to the journey time . Surely a cycle lane could have been just done by painting lines on the roads at a lot less cost.

      • Jean… Maybe more people would cycle on that road if a safe cycle lane existed. As for journey times… on some roads (such as Kirkstall Rd) cycling is by far the quickest way in and out of the city centre during peak times, as all the cars and buses are at a standstill and the cycle lane is empty.

  4. Whilst I accept the increase interest in cycling and the need to make cycling safer I do think that £29 million spent on this is a ridiculous amount of money that could have been better invested in the interest of more people. Better roads housing etc. The year long upheaval and disruption is causing chaos on many major routes.

  5. So our council tax increases. Other serviced are reduced. They are closing care homes for thoses with dementi to save money. Really saving money to waste on this. So far on parts that are open by the dawsons corner to the Thornbury barrex old round about. Ive seen 0 people use the lane. I’ve seen bike on the rd. They seem to refuse to use the lane as they would need to stop and give way to thoses going left onto Galloway lane or the opposite side to calverly. So instead they remain on the rd and at risk of being killed by thoses turning left as they wont follw bike lane onto the crossing.

  6. Hopefully more people will feel safer to get on their bike it could reduce the amount of cars on the road I’m 55 and love going on the canal on my bike but there’s only certain places you can go so I think it’s a great idea

  7. It’s scandalous, cyclists pay nothing for the use and upkeep of the highways and are a constant nuisance and danger to motorists, why should the motorists foot the bill for this pathetic waste of time and money

    • I am A cyclist. I am also a taxpayer. I therefore pay for the upkeep of the roads. Road tax was abolished in 1937 by Winston Churchill

    • Gary Forst says… “It’s scandalous, cyclists pay nothing for the use and upkeep of the highways and are a constant nuisance and danger to motorists”.

      Gary, How many motorists have been killed by cyclists? Why don’t you tell us how many people cars have killed, then how many cyclists have killed…

      You will find cyclists do actually pay for roads. While Vehicle Excise Duty is based on emissions, even eco friendly cars don’t pay this!

  8. absolutley waste of our the tax payers money, i drive and pay road tax and mot, what do they pay! Nothing!! £29 million pound a big bloody disgrace!!! They should be made to pay some money to keep there bikes roadworthy and pay an amount for been on the roads. I could go on forever it totally pisses me off .

    • Well said Linda I could not agree more…. I pay insurance, car tax and have to pass a driving test Togo on the road. What do the cyclist pay? Nothing!!
      A cyclist should have to pass a test, work by the Highway Code, and pay something to use the road as well have some form of insurance. The highways still have massive pot holes in them which are damaging our cars and all this money is bern wasted. I am so angry and now your closing Ruchardshaw lane and giving us yet more problem to get to work!

      • I pay VED, am insured (for my bike and car) and have passed a driving test (with only 1 mistake). Am I allowed on the roads yet?

      • I’m a cyclist. I’ve also passed a driving test, insured and pay £225 a year VED (for my car), I pay council tax and a significant amount of income tax. By law I have the same right to use the road as everyone else. I’m fit and healthy thanks to cycling and running. What is your problem? You could benefit from all this expenditure on the cycle lane too if you got off your fat unfit arse and bought yourself a bike. But you choose not to, then moan and whinge.
        As the the car tax thing… It’s calculated on the emissions you make. Bicycles produce zero emissions. You do realise some eco-friendly cars also pay zero car tax.

        • judging by some comments from the cycling (fitness ) fraternity why not give them unicycles so they can join the other clowns on Leeds city council to think up some more ways to waste public money. !!

    • I own a car Bit worried as I’ve never paid this road tax ypu speak off? Could you point me out how I pay it? Don’t want to get I trouble

  9. This is surely not needed on a already narrow congested road .the expense is also ludicrous when Leeds city council is again crying the poor tail and cutting services.

  10. Motorists always use the “we pay road tax and cyclists don’t” argument to imply that cyclists don’t deserve to have any money spent on them, but road tax (VED) isn’t even what pays for road improvements/moderation! If the council is making these changes then everyone is paying for it with their council tax.
    Cyclists are as entitled to benefit from the council tax they pay as motorists are, if anything they need more protection because they are far more vulnerable than car drivers.
    This coming from a driver who doesn’t even own a bike by the way.

  11. 1) Cycles pay the same amount of vehicle excise duty as all other zero emission vehicles.

    2) This scheme is largely funded through a ring fenced grant from central government.

    29 million is a lot of money and I think it’s right to ask if we’re getting value for money from the scheme. That said, it’s producing many km of improvements and is still a drop in the ocean of what is spent maintaining the roads. Bikes don’t cause potholes and they don’t poison people near the. Suggesting that they’re a danger to drivers is frankly laughable.

  12. Fantastic. Finally the cycle superhighway is underway! Great project with good investment. Should make cycling between Leeds and Bradford safer and encourage more to use the bike rather than the car. Whilst traffic delays are inevitable this may reduce traffic in the long term.

  13. I’m looking forward to it. We should be doing all we can to enable people to cycle.

    £29m is pocket change when compared to the cost of general road and motorway schemes.

  14. So many of the comments posted are very ill-informed. Do some Googling, about the scheme and its aims, the benefits of cycling to health and the economy, and the dreadful impact and cost of personal car use on individuals and society. We cannot keep living – and driving – as we have done. If you have children, care about the (your) environment etc then it’s time to wake up.

  15. There are some amazingly ignorant comments on here.

    I’m a cyclist. So I don’t contribute to “road tax” and the upkeep of the road system? Except, like most cyclists, I also drive a car and pay more than £250 pa VED (there’s no such thing as road tax). I pay a lot of tax on my fuel too. I also pay higher rate income tax. And Council Tax. And VAT. Some of you need to grow up and realise that “cyclists” are just normal people. Just healthier and thinner than they would have been if they didn’t ride.

    The superhighway is to encourage new cyclists to use the road. Those confident and competent to cycle on the roads will probably continue to do so. And they’re allowed to cycle on the roads too. So get over it. If you struggle to share the road with cyclists, then you’re clearly not a competent driver/Perhaps invest in some driving lessons.

    That junction at Stanningley Bottom has needed sorting out for years. At least something is now being done. I remember the improvements made at the big roundabout on the ring road some15 (?) years ago when the lights were installed. Disruptive but worth it. Likewise, I’m currently disrupted by the Rodley and Horsforth roundabout works … but it will be an improvement. So my suggestion is to stop whining and get on with it.

    Perhaps buy a bike. 😉

  16. As a daily cyclist, I’m firmly of the belief that this is money well-spent. Cycling is on the increase everywhere and should definitely be increased. Worries about road safety are one of the main reaons I hear for people not taking up two-wheeled travel, so schemes like this will help. It will repay the money spent in better public health, decreased road use and an improved environment. Well done to the people behind it!

  17. Thanks for everyone’s comments so far – it’s good to see both those for and against the scheme having their say. Keep em coming!

    You’ll see we updated the story at lunchtime on Monday following a comment on Twitter which said our story was unbalanced and didn’t feature any of the benefits the cycle superhighway will bring. In hindsight the commenter probably had a point, and we hope the body of the article now reflects both sides of the story a little better.

  18. I use the cycle lane to cycle to work, its much safer, it is only a few months ago that a cyclist was knocked off his bike by a car at Thornbury Roundabout (before the cycle lanes). He is now a wheelchair user. I know the roadworks are annoying but if we want people to cycle and to reduce the really bad congestion on that road its essential we make cycle lanes safe so people, like me, are encouraged to leave their cars behind.

  19. There is scant evidence that the updated section makes this article more balanced, as you suggest.

    The fact that you needed to have this blindingly obvious fact pointed out to you in the first place says it all, really.

    You have just quoted a single source, kept as short as possible and without any critical comment – in contrast to your own Daily Mail style prose of the original section which clearly indicates an evident bias.

  20. So the cycle loons have taken over this website, eh?

    What a petulant and childish lot you are, lashing out with such fury and siege mentality at all and sundry! While quibbling over one admittedly ill-advised comment about road tax, you completely miss the point which is YOU’RE IN THE MINORITY. Cycling is a minority activity. Sure, you’re all very passionate and you shout loudly enough but there’s NO justification for this kind of MASSIVE expenditure while other vital services are stripped due to austerity.

    To the average Joe Bloggs in the street, this cycle lane IS a waste of money! You might not understand that, but they’d much rather have £29 million spent on keeping adult education running at St Barts in Armley, or the council not to have to face £3 million cuts to public health – you know, INPORTANT stuff in life like health and education.

    Jeez guys, see the bigger picture will ya!!!!! (cue tiresome tirade about how wrong I am …)

      • I don’t doubt the health benefits of cycling but it’s more than a little glib to suggest everyone cycling is going to make a massive difference to the council’s health budget. Like I say, there’s a bigger picture here if you care to admit it – and it’s not about Richardshaw Lane closing or ill-informed claims about ‘road tax’…

        • I think you miss-read sarcasm for petulance. Cycling folk need a sense of humour because they receive substantial abuse from motorists who are ill-informed and ignorant of basic facts.

    • Mr. McCoy.

      I am not a cyclist, I am disabled. Last year Leeds Council spent over £29 million to make me and my fellow ‘minority’ wheelchair users various improvements throughout the district. This means we can get around, often independently, meaning we get more exercise and stay fit and healthy (although my legs will not grow back!). The alternative to this is I stay at home, get fat and possibly acquire heart disease, diabetes, etc and cost the NHS a fair bit more. The majority/minority argument is a bit feeble, since when was society a cohesive mass where everyone benefits from everything? Take a deep breath and try reading from a range of sources, not forums or the usual crap peddled by the media read by the ‘majority’ of the nation.

    • Imagine calling people “cycle-loons” whilst bemoaning how childish and petulant they are. The cognitive dissonance is high with this one. Grow-up.

      There is plenty of evidence for the long-term economic, social and environmental benefits of encouraging people to use their bikes. Use some of your energy to go and look it up. You can even use capitals if you wish.

      • Interesting you pick on the most irrelevant and flippant part of that particular post yet (along with most of the comments since then) skirt around and fail to address my main point – which was that in these days of cutbacks, there are – to my humble opinion – more important things the Government and local authorities could be spending money on.

        Now, where’s my children’s dictionary so I can look up all those big words you’ve used – ‘cognitive dissonance’ indeed! I’ll grow up when you get over yourself!

  21. I’m in favour of any development that encourages people to cycle into Leeds on a workday morning rather than drive. Ricki Lane has always been dodgy from a cyclist’s point of view. And what’s 7 weeks against a generation of people getting leaner, fitter and enjoying life more generally? My advice to shop owners – get yerself a bike rack outside!

  22. All that the entire road needed was a fix to the potholes and slap some double yellows down in a few given spots. Whilst I’m all for cycling and the option for this to be put in it could of easly been resolved with some road markings, with the exeption of a few places to ensure safety. A 10th of the price and little disruption.

  23. I would just like to point out that this, admittedly, large expense would be unnecessary if the “dominant” road users showed the “correct” (according to the highway code), attitude and deference to the more vulnerable road users. I wonder how many of the people crying on here know the correct distance to leave while passing, not to overtake, (as they seem to think they must), in dangerous places – then turn left immediately in front. I could go on for a while but, suffice to say, it’s your own fault.

  24. I live in Thornbury and the roadworks and cycle lane being built here have caused nothing but problems. At one point I couldn’t even get to my house easily without walking into the road or walking over the road and back again just to get to where I needed ..I have a young child in a pram too so this was highly dangerous and inconvenient. I really do not think this cycle lane will utilized as the roads are too busy and dangerous ..people speed up and down the main leeds /Bradford road its a death trap ..not sure that people will use it in winter either with heavy snow etc. It is being built to encourage less people to use cars but that’s just not going to happen in a big city like Leeds and Bradford it’s a complete waste of time and money ..they should have used money for speed cameras there is too many maniacs going far to fast risking the life’s of many ..

    • The problems with the roadworks are a pain yes.

      It seems, however, that you are advocating maintaining the status quo (ie many numbers of car journeys) whilst attempting to slow them down.

      Adding this infrastructure is partly an attempt to change priorities and reduce the number of cars on the road. Surely you can’t argue against that?

  25. Not sure many commenters have read the leaflet but there isn’t going to be a cycle lane on this section of road. you need to have a read of the key features section.

  26. There is far too much traffic in Leeds and it has had a devastating impact on the social fabric of the city. As far as riding a bicycle is concerned, no amount of infrastructure will make it a safe or enjoyable option. We need to do something radical to tackle our car addicted culture. I propose we pedestrianise the inner ring road and send all through traffic around the city instead. Closing all supermarket car parks and banning the school run will also improve things for everybody. Ta.

  27. Waste of money. What’s wrong with painting a white line down the side of the road. £29 million could have been spent better elsewhere.

  28. Cyclist and motorist, living in Bradford, soon to start a new job in Leeds. I’ll be glad to have a safe route to work on my bike.

    I pay taxes of all varieties so can safely assume (confirm) I contribute towards highway upkeep, as do all working cyclists, as the tax paid by motorists is vehicle excise duty, not ‘road tax’. Highway maintenance is not funded directly from VED.

    • Why’s that then ? The tree planting is the only good part of the whole sorry scheme. Anything that improves Stanningley bottom aesthetically is a bonus, as its a right s**t hole at the moment.
      The whole idea is a farce in my opinion.

  29. I dont understand why you lot are bickering and talking nonsence ..its happening, deal with it.

    And yes I tend to agree that it is a complete waste of time money and effort for all the huge number of cyclists (15 cyclists in summer on average per day) that use Bradford Road and pass through Stanningley Bottom.

    • I completely agree that the money spent on the so called ‘cycle super highway’ is a complete waste of money. However, the farsley/stanningley area where i live is jammed every day, even before the road works began, simply because people are so idle and lazy to get a bus or train instead of getting into their ‘2nd home’ the car!!….the majority are on finance and the owners are most likely in 1000’s of debt so it seems strange suggesting their taxes are supporting it since they probably owe 1000’s in debt to their credit cards etc. Personal opinion, no bikes or cars on the road….make a super tax to car drivers so they get off their fat ar*e and actually walk somewhere…and i dont mean for a cheesburger

  30. After narrowly avoiding being knocked in a designated pedestrian area by a cyclist I would ask the question who would I be able to claim from for injuries incurred had I not been so quick on my feet ? Would it be Leeds city council for not enforcing the pedestrian only rules or the cyclist , assuming of course that this halfwit had any liability insurance. Would this be the same for anyone unfortunate enough to encounter a cyclist on the ” SUPERHIGHWAY “.How many motorists have suffered damage to their vehicles by these inconsiderate morons who think they have priority over pedestrians /other road users ? Wake up Leeds council you may find claims coming your way !!!!

  31. what a complete and utter waste of public funds Leeds city council seems hell bent on creating more congestion and thus pollution in order to create a cycle lane that will be under vastly underused whilst at the same time cutting down on the usable road space that is paid for by the overtaxed and persecuted motorist


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