A £1.25m world-class community outdoor cycling circuit which was built to promote and encourage grassroots cycling and improve physical and mental health in the area, will be opened by the Minister for Social Care, Mental Wellbeing and Sport Maree Todd on Saturday 27 May at 12.15pm.
The West Lothian Cycle Circuit, which has been supported by the likes of Sir Chris Hoy, Katie Archibald and Ben Rowlings is a 10 year vision from the local community who were at the heart of its inception.
Delivered with investment from the Cycling Facilities Fund, the 1km traffic-free, tarmac circuit made up of 4 loops is fenced and floodlit for safe all year round use. Linlithgow Community Development Trust (LCDT) has created the circuit to support both professional cyclists - it is being offered as a training facility for athletes coming to Glasgow and Scotland for the 2023 UCI Cycling World Cycling Championships this August - and the local community.
It’s taken just over a year to build the circuit in south-east Linlithgow, but it’s been over a decade in the planning after LCDT first conceived the plan at community consultation in 2012.
Sports Minister Maree Todd said “I’m delighted to celebrate the opening of this latest investment into the West Lothian Cycle Circuit which will support the local community to be active and hopefully encourage more people to give cycling a try.
“With only a few months to go until the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships, it is great to see the Cycling Facilities Fund continue to contribute to a long-lasting active legacy, helping people to improve their physical, mental and social health through cycling.”
Carole Racionzer, chair of LCDT, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be opening the West Lothian Cycle Circuit in Linlithgow after so many years of campaigning and fundraising. We’re really excited to be welcoming professional cyclists to Linlithgow but equally thrilled the local community will have this exceptional asset to support people learning to cycle and to cycle safely.
“It will be used to promote active travel and a range of different sports, such as triathlon, skating and running.
"This has been a true partnership between so many organisations, including our main funders West Lothian Council and sportscotland.”
Forbes Dunlop, Chief Executive, sportscotland said: “The aim of the Cycling Facilities Fund is to deliver a lasting impact from the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships by inspiring new and existing cyclists to make cycling a sport for life.
“The ambitious project created here in Linlithgow is a fantastic example of how communities across Scotland can harness the opportunities offered by the fund to deliver inclusive cycling facilities and improve the health and wellbeing of their local area. Congratulations to everyone involved in making the West Lothian Cycling Circuit a reality.”
Keen amateur cyclist Matthew Ball whose vision and determination has been behind the project said:
“I could not be prouder of this moment. This will be a game changer for cycling in the region."
"We wanted to build a community around the circuit and make it a cycling hub. Cycling Club West Lothian Clarion and other local clubs will organise races and coaching sessions for adults and youngsters, so Linlithgow will be a real hotspot for cycling."
Sophie McCall, Head of Development & Participation at Scottish Cycling, said: “This facility is a great example of the type of cycling hub we wanted to create through the Cycling Facilities Fund. We wanted to provide safe, traffic-free, fun and inspiring places for everyone to be able to build their confidence and skills in cycling, whatever their level, and make cycling a sport for life”
“I look forward to seeing the impact that this facility will have, both in the local community, with the opportunity for new members at West Lothian Clarion Cycling Club, and as a unique and exciting venue which will be a huge asset to cycling events in Scotland.”
The Community Cycling Fund and Cycling Facility Fund will deliver a tangible benefit from the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships, which will bring together 13 existing UCI World Championships into a new mega event in Glasgow and across Scotland from 3 – 13 August.
The public are welcome to attend the opening from 11am and there are also Cycle beginner coaching sessions in the morning which can be booked into via clicking here