CYCLISTS have welcomed changes to plans for a shared path with pedestrians in Headington to make it safer.

Yesterday Oxfordshire County Council agreed to widen the path and include marked divisions for cyclists and pedestrians on the London Road route.

That was a key request from those who took part in the scheme’s consultation.

Headington and Quarry councillor Roz Smith said she was pleased with the outcome.

She said: “The devil is in the detail, so I am glad the officers listened to what we had to say.

“Now what I would like to see is for the council to also include ‘share with care’ signs in the areas where it will not be segregated, such as those near crossings.

“The signs are Department of Transport approved.”

County council cabinet member for transport David Nimmo-Smith, who approved the proposals, said: “I always try and get local councillors on-side and am glad the community has now bought into it.”

The county council had proposed extending a shared path on the southern pavement of London Road about 160 metres westwards from Lyndworth Close to Gladstone Road.

To do this it said it would need to widen the footway around a proposed new bus shelter opposite Lyndworth Close, so that waiting pedestrians could be more easily avoided by cyclists.

This was also proposed to make safer a “pinchpoint” next to Colemans Hill playground and the Green Road roundabout. Cyclox chairman Simon Hunt said that had been a particular concern to the group.

He said: “It is best to have segregation for cyclists where possible and that is the case for the majority of this scheme.

“But it is good that council engineers have found a way to get more space for the narrow section.’’ Labour councillor John Sanders, who opposed the original designs, said the changes were “a much better approach.

He said: “This proves consultations can work and do not just have to be officers paying lip service, then doing what they want anyway.”

The extended path will link up with another proposed route starting at Gladstone Road going further west, to Wharton Road.

That gained approval in February and is expected to be created at the same time.