An application for a Keighley cycle and pedestrian path linking Stockbridge with Utley has been approved by planners.

The Bradford Council proposals for the £195,000 route first featured in the Keighley News last September.

People in the town involved with promoting cycling welcomed the news, adding they hope the route could open in time for recreational cyclists expected ahead of the Tour de France visit in July.

The intention is to construct a three-metre-wide fully surfaced track for use by both pedestrians and cyclists.

A planning officer’s report stated: “The development would not compromise the use of adjoining land by its occupants, and would have no adverse effects on residential properties beyond the railway line to the west.

“This will offer significant highway safety improvements to cyclists and pedestrians without introducing any harmful effects in return. While Royd Lane is steep and narrow in places, this does not make it unsuitable for cyclists or pedestrians.

“Though Royd Ings Avenue is primarily intended to offer suitable access for heavy goods vehicles servicing the industrial units on the estate, it is still a public highway open for use to the full range of vehicles.

“Neither the route itself, nor its connection with the existing road network will have any adverse impact on highway safety.”

The 270-metre-long route will follow an existing unsurfaced track that links Royd Lane and Royd Ings Avenue, across brownfield land owned by Bradford Council.

The local authority says the track will create a link for cyclists and pedestrians from Stockbridge to Utley, without them having to use the busy A650 Hard Ings Road and the B6265 Skipton Road.

The project was announced last April as one of 70 Safer Cycle Routes across the UK funded with government cash. The Department for Transport granted £150,000 for the Keighley route, with a further £45,000 to come from other sources.