Pentland Trail Centre proposal goes to public exhibition in March

Proposals for the creation of The Pentland Trail Centre, a publicly accessible and family focused mountain bike trail centre, supported by a relevant leisure based commercial development, will be presented at an open public consultation on Tuesday 5th March 2019 at Swanston Golf Clubhouse.

The trail centre, conceived by local business men Alastair McClung and Stuart Wright, hopes to revolutionise cycling participation in East Central Scotland.

The site for the trail centre is located within the boundary of the former Lothianburn Golf Course, sitting inside both the Edinburgh cicy boundary and Pentland Hills Regional Park.

According to McClung and Wright, the easy access to the Pentland Trail Centre will offer an excellent introduction to traffic-free cycling for kids and their families, as well as providing more challenging cross-country trails for the estimated 260,000 cyclists in Edinburgh and Midlothian.

The terrain an location of the site will see over 10km of mountain bike trails to suit all abilities, as well as other outdoor activities such as a high ropes course, a zipline and an alpine roller luge.

Both McClung and Wright are keen mountain bikers and qualified Mountain Bike Leaders, who developed the Pentland Trail Centre from a 2014 Feasibility Study as an initiative of Hillend Laisure Ltd, a new company established by the pair.

The outdoor trail centre, occupying more than 80% of the site, will be supported by a commercial development to include café facilities, changing facilities, relevant retail, office space and accommodation ‘pods’.  It will be located in the valley to the rear of the Steading Inn and between the northern slopes of the Pentland Regional Park and the central ridge that runs from the old golf clubhouse up to the T woods.

McClung said: “Our passion is to introduce mountain biking to a much wider audience, on the perfect site, right next to the city. It’s the ideal use of the old golf course site and is a perfect gateway to the rest of the Pentland Hills. By introducing a commercial element the project can move from a vision to reality.”

A subsequent public consultation from the Feasibility Study recorded local support of more than 96% for the trail centre.

The aims of the Pentland Trail Centre project have been supported by Scottish Cycling as the ideal development to improve cycling participation, with good traffic free trails easily accessible from the City of Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Graeme McLean, Project Manager for Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland at Scottish Cycling, said: We look forward to being involved in the consultation process for the new Pentland trail Centre development; and to understand further how it is going to increase participation in mountain biking in Edinburgh and the surrounding area.”

The consultation will take place 5th March at Swanston Golf Clubhouse, 111 Swanston Road, Edinburgh, EH10 7DS, between 14.00 and 19.00 where feedback and comments are invited.

Hayley Everett

Multimedia Reporter

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