Mayor's Challenge Fund (MCF)

The MCF aims to kick start the delivery of the GM Cycling and Walking Commissioner’s Made to Move report, and continue Greater Manchester’s journey to becoming a city region where walking and cycling are the natural choices for shorter journeys, as set out in Greater Manchester's Transport Strategy 2040. Also supporting this is The Bee Network infrastructure proposal, which aims to create the UK’s largest cycling and walking network.

There is £160 million available up to 2022 and MCF is split into two funding pots for:

  • Active centres and corridors
  • Active neighbourhoods.

Wigan Council has already secured over £16 million funding from the MCF to deliver a number of schemes across the borough.

Schemes proposed for the borough

Smithy Brook Road / Warrington Road junction improvements

The A49 and M58 link road schemes will converge at the A49 Warrington Road / Smithy Brook Road (SBR) junction in Goose Green, meaning that it will become a major intersection.

This proposed scheme at SBR aims to improve traffic capacity on the network, as well as providing improved facilities for people travelling on foot and by bike, enhancing connectivity and maintaining road safety for all users.

The scheme will:

  • Reduce the central refuge island to create additional traffic lanes in both directions on the A49 Warrington Road (between Smithy Brook Road and the A49 Link Road roundabout).
  • Create an additional left turn lane on the A49 Warrington Road northbound approach into Smithy Brook Road.
  • Deliver two-way segregated cycle facilities to aid connectivity and maintain road safety for people on bikes.
  • Improve pedestrian and cycle facilities at the junction by installing toucan crossings.

View the Warrington Road / Smithy Brook Junction proposed plan

See our consultation leaflet

Find out more on our frequently asked questions page.

Have your say

In order to develop the scheme proposals, we would welcome your feedback. There will be a six week consultation on these proposed changes, from Monday 16th December 2019 to Friday 24th January 2020.


Post: The Major Projects Team, Wigan Council, Places Directorate, PO Box 100, WN1 3DS

Victoria Street / Warrington Road junction improvements

The proposed Victoria Street/Warrington Road junction improvement scheme includes changing the junction to remove the traffic merge so that Victoria Street and Warrington Road have their own signal stages, i.e. when traffic on Warrington Road is moving through the junction, traffic on Victoria Street is stopped and vice versa.

There will also be a new crossing to help pedestrians safely cross this busy junction. This will mean better flow of traffic with less queuing as well as safer movement of vehicles, making it safer for pedestrians too. The scheme also incorporates segregated pedestrian and cycle crossing facilities, providing a continuous route from Alexandra Park along Warrington Road and connecting with the recently-completed facilities at Saddle Junction cycle scheme and Robin Park Road.

Proposals include a new toucan crossing near Alexandra Park, closing Arundel Street at Warrington Road and installing double lines between Woodyates Street and Mere Street.

When completed, the scheme should provide a much more coherent, direct and safe cycling and pedestrian route, giving people a better experience when negotiating this busy junction.

Consultation on Victoria Street / Warrington Road junction

In order to develop the scheme proposals, we consulted with residents between 12th August and 8th September 2019.

We have now received your comments and feedback and thank you for taking the time to contact us. We have updated the plan and the 'You said, we will' document following feedback from the consultation.

Standish Mineral Line extension

The project will extend the Standish Mineral Line to provide the missing connection to the work completed by Highways England at Junction 27 of the M6, and will include cycling and walking routes, and crossing point.

The scheme will provide additional and improved sections of on and off-road facilities, creating high quality multi-user routes (walking, cycling, equestrians and wheelchair) to extend the existing Standish Mineral Line. It will provide a safe route for journeys into the local shopping centre in Standish, as well as to schools, health services and leisure venues.

The improvements will resurface existing informal routes, public rights of way, and bridleways, providing new connections, crossing points and links to new housing developments.

Our aim is to commence works on site in spring 2020 and be completed by the end of summer 2020.

Bridgewater canal towpath

The first Mayors Challenge Fund (MCF) scheme is now complete with improvements to the canal towpath in Astley. The works included a stretch of towpath from Higher Green Lane to the Salford border, with a new multi-user surface, as well as improved drainage, access points and signage along the canal.

This Astley section of Bridgewater Way encourages people to walk and cycle on the canal and towpath from Wigan Pier through Leigh and into Salford.

The upgrade of this ‘missing link’ has resulted in a 20-mile continuous high-quality sustainable transport route from Wigan to Salford and beyond.

Toucan crossings for Wigan Central

The scheme will provide safe road crossing facilities including five Toucan Crossing upgrades on existing key junctions along Gidlow Lane, Springfield Road, Kenyon Road/Walkden Ave, Park Road, and Frog Lane. In addition, there will be implied crossing points to improve the safety at side-road junctions.

This is a densely populated area of Wigan, with little or no provision for crossing busy roads, and access to the town centre from this area is difficult if you are walking or cycling.

The route will provide safe crossing facilities to Wigan Town Centre with access to all the services located there, including bus and train stations, shops, and health and leisure facilities. This will give local residents the option to walk or cycle safely into town rather than driving.

It is anticipated that work on site will commence in summer 2020.

Leigh/Atherton/Tyldesley Bee Network

This scheme will provide improved routes and crossings throughout Leigh, Atherton and Tyldesley to create a new and improved cycling and walking network. Our proposals will improve easy and safe access to key destinations across the Leigh area, helping to cut congestion, improve air quality, and increase cycling and walking rates across the area.

Key features and elements of the scheme include:

  • Improved on and off-road cycling and walking routes for easier and safer access into Leigh, Tyldesley and Atherton.
  • New and improved links to key destinations including schools, health services, transport hubs and leisure areas.
  • Provision of dedicated cycling and walking lanes, and safe crossing points, along main roads and near schools.
  • Sustainable access to jobs and town centres to support businesses and services located there.

It is anticipated that work on site will commence in 2020 and be completed by March 2022.

Do you have feedback?

Although we have secured funding for a number of schemes based on our initial plans, we are still only at the development stage and we are seeking feedback on our ideas to develop these into fully detailed schemes. Please contact Major Projects if you have any feedback.


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