Cycling On Sovereign Harbour Paths

The June edition of Waterlines is now out. It features an article on cycling on Sovereign Harbour paths. We’d like to help clarify the situation.

The Sovereign Harbour Residents Association claim cycling on the paths is not permitted. This isn’t quite true.

Bespoke, the SHRA and East Sussex County Council looked into cycling around the harbour. ESCC concluded that although there is no right to ride, it wasn’t an offence to ride a bike on the adopted quayside paths. There are private paths where cycling is not allowed. These include outside The Waterfront and most of the seafront path parallel to Pacific Drive. The eastern part of this path as a S106 agreement that allows cycling. The areas where it is possible to cycle shown on the Eastbourne Cycle Map.

The SHRA go into detail on the difference between a footpath and footway. Bespoke are pleased the SHRA read our previous article on this and took it on board. They are correct there is a difference. They are incorrect when they say the 1980 Highways Act supercedes the 1835 Highways Act. Later acts need to revoke old acts in writing. The 1980 act doesn’t touch 1835 act, so leaves it’s standing provisions intact. Most of the 1835 act has been revoked by previous acts of parliament, but some clauses are still law.

The quayside paths are not cycle paths, but it’s not a crime to ride on them. We would always urge anyone riding there to give pedestrians priority.

The Eastbourne Cycle Map shows where it is possible to legally cycle in Eastbourne and Sovereign Harbour. ESCC confirmed the map as being correct before going to press at the request of the SHRA. The map is free to download, to collect from local cycle shops, or the Tourist Information shop in Terminus Road.