Safe Cycling at Tameside’s New Cycle Circuit
Story posted May 4 | by Larry Hickmott | Facebook Group for Circuit |
Riders Note: Due to delays caused by the car park not being finished, the first event at Manchester's first cycle circuit at Tameside will not now take place until June 15.
Cycling on the open road can be daunting for many would be cyclists but a new dedicated cycle circuit in Ashton Under Lyne means cyclists of all ages can ride and race their bikes away from traffic. The circuit, which will be completed soon, is situated in the Richmond Park complex alongside the East Cheshire Harriers athletics club and the Curzon Ashton Football club.
Construction was going full gas when British Cycling visited the circuit before the May Day Bank holiday.
The cycling facility is also close to other amenities such as the town centre and a retail park with cinema, hotel and many places to eat. British Cycling’s North West Regional Events Officer, Phil West, says of the new facility “the new circuit in Tameside will be an exciting addition to the area providing local clubs and cyclists with a traffic free venue where they can hold training session and races alike.”
The circuit, which was started in January, is one kilometre in length and pancake flat making it suitable for cyclists of all abilities. To fit the circuit into the available land on the site, the newly laid strip of tarmac twists and turns to provide a challenging course that will help riders enhance their skills on a bike. There will also be cut throughs so small sections of the circuit can be used independently of the others when being used for youth events.
The strip of tarmac is five metres wide with 6 metre wide straights and is completely fenced in to make it safe. Lighting has also been installed so it can be used year round. A bike shed and car park have also been built for those using the circuit. There are changing rooms/showers in the athletics facility building.
As the first purpose built circuit in Manchester, British Cycling expects the facility to be in demand from the many cycling clubs and organisers who are connected to the sport in the North West. The first events to be held at the new venue will be a 10 race series of circuit races organised by the Tameside Cycling Development Group in association with several Manchester based clubs.
The 10 event series will run on Tuesday evenings and kick off with the first event on Tuesday June 1st. These events will run right through the summer until 3rd of August. The racing will be for Youth riders, Junior’s, Women and Senior’s. The evening will kick off with a Youth race which will be followed by a senior race for 3rd and 4th cats and the final event of the evening for Elite, 1st and 2nd category riders.
The circuit is in the Borough of Tameside only four miles from the national cycling centre (Manchester Velodrome). It is also close to the M60 motorway for those travelling to the venue.
As the circuit is floodlit, there will be the capacity to run separate races for the senior categories as above but also maintain the races as decent length events. There are also slots at the weekend that have been specifically left free for British Cycling clubs to promote events and anyone wanting to promote at the circuit, can contact Phil West, the North West REO to pursue their options.
Well known organiser and coach, Matt Winston, says “'coming from the borough of Tameside, I was extremely excited to hear about the new cycling circuit to be built in Ashton. From a coaching perspective, it will be great to have a quality facility like this that is so close to the Velodrome in Manchester. When working with the young riders in the Talent Team, we can run good quality road sessions without having to travel a long distance.”
“It will also help to develop the standard of novice and experts alike from Tameside and the surrounding areas with good quality coaching sessions from great Go-Ride clubs such as Mossley CRT. In my voluntary time, I also organise bike races and I have included it into the CDNW Youth League for 2010 with plans to include it in a national series promotion for 2011”
It is not just cycle racing and cycle clubs that will benefit from this excellent facility. The council also have plans to make this circuit a much used facility by the local community such as schools. British Cycling will bring you more on this fabulous facility in the coming months.
One end of the circuit (closest to the car park) is a tight hairpin with slight banking on it.
The far end also has a hairpin but this one is a wide radius bend.
The main straights, each a few hundred meters long, run at the back of the football stadium