Ben’s Way to be open next year on Preston's Guild Wheel

Ben Ashworth
Ben Ashworth

A section of the Guild Wheel dedicated to an inspirational Preston charity campaigner will be unveiled on the first anniversary of his death.

Council bosses have confirmed that a Ben Ashworth Way section – a 2.5km stretch of the popular exercise route – will be officially in place next year.

It follows on from a petition being presented to the town hall calling for the honour after 38-year-old Ben died earlier this year having battled bowel cancer.

Authority leader Coun Peter Rankin informed councillors at the latest city council meeting the dedication would be a fitting tribute to his tireless charity fund-raising efforts.

The section – running westwards between the Continental public house at Riverside to a point on Navigation Way, Riversway – will have a plaque with Ben’s name at each end.

Ben’s family had previously said they would like the stretch to have 200m markers installed along the way to encourage people to exercise there.

Coun Rankin said: “I am pleased to say that we are working with Louise, Ben Ashworth’s wife, to dedicate a portion of the Guild Wheel to the memory of Ben.

“We intend to time this dedication with the anniversary of his death, in July 2018.”

The council had considered renaming the section of the Guild Wheel but as it includes “extensive lengths of public highway...including the word ‘way’ may result in confusion to highway users as to the name of the road they are travelling.

“It is therefore proposed...the route is dedicated to Ben, which is still a fitting tribute.”

The Ben Ashworth Way will join up with the part of the Guild Wheel already named the Mike Atkins Way - after one of the landmark’s founders - “so as to avoid leaving an un-dedicated section between the two”, a council report added.