Scotland’s first cycle circuit has opened in Fife.
Fife Cycle Park was opened earlier today (Wednesday) by record breaking long-distance cyclist Mark Beaumont and Provost of Fife Jim Leishman.
Funded by Fife Council, sportscotland and the Scottish Government, the purpose built cycle park is set to put central Fife at the forefront of Scottish cycling and further bolster the Kingdom’s position as the number one destination in Scotland for outdoor activities.
Fife Cycle Park is an outdoor floodlit cycle facility that allows for a full range of cycling activities to take place in a traffic free environment all year round. It’s 1.6km in length but offers various circuit layout options within this. Customers are able to choose from a variety of circuit configurations and several groups or sessions can use the facility at the same time.
Provost of Fife Jim Leishman said: “Fife Cycle Park is already attracting the attention of regional and national events but it truly will be a facility for all ages and abilities. The Cycle Park team are developing a very inclusive programme which will offer opportunities for everyone to have the chance to be physically active on a bike.
“It’s great to see the reaction of everyone here today who has had the opportunity to try the circuit out, from cycling royalty like Mark Beaumont to local youngsters who are just beginning to develop their skills. Learning to ride a bike is an important life skill and this will be an invaluable facility in helping to break down inequalities and the barriers people face in trying out or returning to cycling.”
Mark Beaumont added: “I’ve really enjoyed opening the Fife Cycle Park today. This is a first for Scotland and a wonderful facility available to everyone, not just skilled cyclists. I believe it will encourage people of all abilities to get on their bikes and have fun.”
A funding contribution of £300,000 of National Lottery investment was made from sportscotland and £300,000 from the Scottish Government Regeneration Capital Grant Fund.
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland said: “At sportscotland we work with our partners to deliver facilities that encourage participation and progression at all levels, from schools and communities to performance sport and that’s exactly what Fife Council has delivered here.
“Fife Cycle Park will be a real asset to the local community and will also play an important role in developing the sport of cycling. That’s why we were delighted to be involved in the planning and development of the cycle park and to invest £300,000 of National Lottery funding in this ambitious project. Congratulations to everyone involved.”
Kevin Stewart, Minister for Local Government and Housing said: “I am pleased that this fantastic unique facility is now open. It will encourage more local people to cycle and be active and also create training and employment opportunities which will bring in more visitors to the area. In addition, The Clubhouse, supported by the Regeneration Capital Grant Fund, will provide high quality meeting and social space for the community, who can be very proud of this new addition to the area. I wish the community many successful events at their new centre.”
A dedicated skills loop has also been created by contractor The Purvis Group and gifted to the park. The ‘Robert Purvis Play Zone’ is a specially designed mini road consisting of three intertwined loops for young children to play on. It is ideally suited for balance bikes, first stages learning to ride a pedal bike and scooters.
Bob Purvis said: “I have always believed you must provide the right environment for young people to acquire skills and enable them to flourish in the workplace and in life. The Purvis Group of Companies rely heavily on investing in young people to facilitate our future growth. I’m especially proud of the success of Realm Construction’s award winning apprenticeship programme. These young people are from the local area and have contributed greatly to the achievements of the group.
“We saw the donation of the play zone as an extension of our core values – where young people can safely learn great habits that will last a lifetime benefitting health and wellbeing within our community.”