'Not everyone has a bell on a bicycle,' courtesy issues on Suir Blueway around Tipperary

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Concerns have been expressed over the lack of “courtesy” being shown on the Suir Blueway around Clonmel.

Cllr Michael Murphy (FG) raised the issue at the June meeting of Clonmel Borough District.

He said: “It was really, really busy during the Covid-19 period and it is a real success story. It is an evolving amenity.”

The Suir Blueway is a 53km kayaking and canoe trail from Cahir to Carrick-on-Suir and a 21km walking and cycling trail from Clonmel to Carrick-on-Suir (or vice versa) along the beautiful River Suir.

Cllr Murphy advised council officials that it is “quite dangerous” walking on it with cyclists and other users when there is busy traffic on the amenity.

He said he uses the Blueway regularly and has witnessed issues around “courtesy” on the walkway.

He witnessed some people’s behaviour and said: “I don’t know did they come from a different country and they use a different side of the road. Not everybody has a bell on a bicycle.”

He then asked for clearer guidance for users. “There is a lot of signage but do we need more signage?” he added at the meeting.

INTIMIDATION

“There are so many access points and some elderly people have been intimidated by certain individuals who won’t move out of the way.

“I want to see can we come up with some sort of a solution.”

Cllr Siobhán Ambrose also raised the issue and identified an area on the Blueway where there is a sign for cyclists to dismount and some are not doing so.

“It’s at a specific point where it gets narrow. There are lots of concerned cocooners who are nearly in on top of the river trying to avoid them. The sign is very small,” she added.

Cllr Niall P. Dennehy (IND) said on Greenways there is a protocol that users “walk on the left and pass on the right.”
He called for a protocol of some sort on the Blueway but warned that sometimes “intimidation comes into it”.

A council official said the local authority would have a look at the issues but “can only do so much in terms of signage”.

It is meant to be a “shared space,” he added, but admitted that there are “pinchpoints” they can have a look at.

The Blueway was opened to the general public in May of last year and it has become a hugely popular attraction in south Tipperary for tourists and local residents.