A MYSTERY death threat targeted at council employees involved in a controversial cycle lane development is being probed by police.

Witnesses said staff were "visibly upset" and shaken after an angry resident left a post-it note asking how to execute representatives of East Dunbartonshire Council over the Bears Way project.



The note was discovered at Kessington Public Hall in Bearsden last Thursday after a heated drop-in session about the next phase of the project, attended by hundreds of locals.

It asked: "Where do we que [sic] to execute everyone here who works for [East Dunbartonshire Council]?"

Police Scotland are now investigating.

The segregated two-way cycle lane is being built along the A81, the major commuter road linking Milngavie and Bearsden to Glasgow.

Phase one, which opened in September, links Burnbrae in Milngavie to Hillfoot in Bearsden. The second phase will run from Hillfoot to Kessington.

One resident said: "By the time I arrived and spoke with council staff literally hundreds of people had attended to voice their opposition. Fears over falling property values and car parking and lack of road space seemed to vex most people, but some residents felt so strongly that they left a written death threat.

"It was certainly a tense atmosphere, at least one council worker had to leave because of the abuse she received. And all because of a bike path."



Dave Brennan, a local cycling campaigner and blogger, said one cyclist at the meeting had been directly threatened by a local resident who vowed to "aim his car at the cyclist if he ever saw him on the road".

Having previously been a critic of the cycleway's design, Mr Brennan added that he now believed it had the potential to "transform the area for the better".

However, critics blasted the meeting on Facebook as a "chaotic pseudo-consultation" after residents were asked to write their views on post-it notes, which they were told would be collected by staff and uploaded to the council's website.

Others were angry over the lack of details about the rest of the Bears Way development's layout, amid fears that it will increase traffic congestion by substantially cutting the space available for motorists.

Councillors voted to create the segregated cycle-way last year to tackle "indiscriminate and inconsiderate parking" by drivers along the route's existing advisory cycle lane.

Jacqueline MacRae, chair of Bearsden East Community Council, said that while their members generally supported the scheme they had been disappointed by the "unsafe" design of phase one.

In particular, she said the community council believed that the barrier between the cycle path and the main road was too low to prevent a cyclist who collided with it from falling into the path of oncoming traffic. She added that, at certain points, the path was barely two metres wide - contrary to safety guidance which recommends nothing narrower than three metres for a two-way cycle lane.

Mrs MacRae, who attended part of Thursday's event, said it was "a very angry meeting".

She added: "Local people in general are not happy with phase one. A lot of people have now driven or cycled up and down the route and found so many problems with it, and we absolutely do not want those put into the next phase."

HeraldScotland: Councillor Alan Moir, convener of development and regeneration at East Dunbartonshire councilCouncillor Alan Moir, convener of development and regeneration at East Dunbartonshire council

Councillor Alan Moir, Convener of Development and Regeneration, said many people had expressed both positive and negative opinions "in a constructive and productive manner".

He added: "Regrettably there were examples of abusive and unacceptable behaviour directed towards employees of East Dunbartonshire Council and its partners in the scheme, Cycling Scotland and Sustrans.

"Let me be clear - abusive behaviour towards any employee - in person, over the phone or online - is wholly unacceptable. The Council adopts a zero tolerance approach to this issue.

"East Dunbartonshire Council is liaising with Police Scotland in relation to unacceptable behaviour as regards the A81 Bears Way project."