It is great to see increased activity on Leckhampton Hill by all kinds of users. But this has led to occasional friction between bikers and other users.
A group of riders, walkers, the Friends of Leckhampton Hill and Charlton Kings Common (FOLK) and Cheltenham Borough Council are working together to ensure that all users can use the hill safely. This does not mean a Nanny State sanitisation of your favourite tracks.
Even though walking on the hill is a right whereas cycling is by the permission of the landowner, Cheltenham Borough Council, walking groups accept that it is not safe for them to use MTB (mountain bike) tracks. Us riders will have to accept that we cannot just create tracks everywhere on this private land and designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The SSSI staus is the reason for the council’s funding of conservation work by the council and FOLK.
The main, well-established trails that we all know and love like Mainline and the Comings will remain with some warning signage for riders and walkers and, in some case, mods to reduce speed and improve lines of sight where they join walking paths. You will see some of the minor more ad-hoc MTB tracks being blocked off because we are unable to make them safe for other users. This is normally because they join walking tracks without the possibility of slowing or with poor visibility. This is the small price we are going to have to pay for keeping the long-established trails on the hill. So please work with us by not riding or reopening these trails so that we can maintain biking access on the hill whilst keeping other users safe.
If you do plan to do any digging on the hill, we ask that you speak to the Senior Warden, Wayne Sedgewick (07733014743, Wayne.Sedgwick@cheltenham.gov.uk) first.
Leckhampton Downhill trails & trail fairy’s Facebook page
Clive Lewis, MTB Capt. C&CCC, firstname.lastname@example.org