The National Trust is launching a series of new initiatives aimed and getting more people into the countryside by bike, including new mountain bike centres, a summer cycling festival and a series of ‘sportive’ challenge rides. The National Trust Membership is fantastic value and this is another smart move from the organisation.
New National Trust cycling initiatives
Most Trust properties are already easily accessible by bike, with many linked to the National Cycle Network and most with cycle parking on site or nearby. More than 200 trust properties are within a mile of the National Cycle Network, so the Trust hopes its new ventures will encourage more and more people to discover the countryside by bike. New initiatives include:
- ‘sportive’ challenge rides
- bespoke mountain bike facilities in the south west
- summer cycling festival
- working on existing Trust land to make way-marked trails more suitable for cycling
- 2012 Olympic road race route to tackle the Trust’s Box Hill
Philip Broadbent-Yale, Outdoors Programme Manager at the National Trust, said:
“There are hundreds of thousands of acres of beautiful countryside, historic parks and forests owned by the National Trust just waiting to be explored on two wheels.”
Bespoke mountain bike centres
The National Trust is developing two bespoke mountain bike facilities in the south west, at Plymbridge near Plymouth and in Cornwall. The centres are part of a wider project called 1SW, creating six cycling hubs across the region, providing graded way-marked routes and skills areas for all abilities.
‘Sportive’ challenge rides
A series of challenge rides – known as ‘sportives’ – will take place based around National Trust locations throughout 2011. The first will take place on 1 May in Pembrokeshire, West Wales, with more scheduled throughout the year.
“These rides offer a fantastic way to see amazing countryside and have been specifically designed to cater for all ages and abilities, from first-time riders to seasoned pros, there’s something for everyone,” added Broadbent-Yale.
The rides wind through open countryside and range from a few miles to testing 50-100 mile rides for the more experienced. They’ll be fully way-marked and marshalled by professional event organizers.
Summer cycling festival
A cycling festival will see properties across England and Wales opening their doors to cyclists between 16 and 24 July 2011, with a range of activities including a bike clinic, scenic rides at properties and guided rides from local cities.
Olympic cycling to tackle National Trust’s famous Box Hill
What’s more, the route for the London 2012 Olympic cycling road race will pass through Trust land. One of the race’s highlights will be the climb of the Trust’s famous Box Hill in Surrey. It’s hoped the event will further boost the interest in cycling and highlight the cycling opportunities the Trust offers.
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