''Profit path'' leads deflated customers to bike shop's door

A northern bike path has been "upgraded" with rough gravel, leading to punctures for any not on mountain bikes.
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A Sustrans cycle route in northern England resurfaced at a cost of £200,000 was recently covered in gravel and is now unusable for bikes other than mountain bikes, said Mark Breeze of Breeze Cycles in Amble, Northumberland.

The cycle path between Warkworth and Alnmouth is now nicknamed the "profit path" by Breeze because it brings so many customers to his door, he told BBC Look North. Breeze said he'd rather the path was returned to its former, smooth state.

Gravel was laid on top of a smooth tarmac surface in order to give it a more rural aesthetic. The road does not have the same treatment. It looks and feels like a road – a gravel surface would force motorists to reduce their speed.

Northumberland County Council said the cycle path is suitable for all types of bicycle.

However, Sustrans North East network manager Tom Bailey told the BBC: "Sustrans and the council accept there's a problem which has affected the usability of the path.

"It needs to be just as usable on a road bike as it would be on any other kind of bike."

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