Linlithgow Community Development Trust (LCDT) received a major boost for their plans to build the 1km West Lothian Cycle Circuit in Linlithgow.
The Trust has secured a £100,000 grant from sportscotland and is now nearly half way towards hitting their £895,380 funding target and realising their ambitious plans to build a 1km traffic-free cycle circuit for everyone to enjoy. This project, the first community-led facility of its kind in Scotland, aims to provide an exciting range of supported cycling sessions for people of all ages and abilities from across West Lothian.
Fraser Falconer, Chair of LCDT says “We are absolutely over the moon about the £100,000 grant, and are grateful to sportscotland for supporting the project at this crucial stage. Securing this large donation is the start of a big push to complete our fundraising campaign”.
LCDT have been working with West Lothian Council, the local community and a number of clubs in developing plans for the facility, aimed at getting more people cycling and allowing cycling for all.
A cycle development officer on site will run coached sessions for adults and children so more people can improve their skills in a safe cycling environment.
Stewart Harris, sportscotland Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted to be investing in the West Lothian Cycle Circuit. The circuit will help support the cycling community in the area for years to come and provide opportunities to cycle for all ages and abilities.
“Cycling is in a great place at the moment in Scotland with our cyclists about to set off for the Gold Coast in the hunt for medals at the Commonwealth Games, and, back at home, Scottish Cycling continue to do great work to encourage more people to take up the sport
“We look forward to working with our partners to ensure the project moves forward in the coming months.”
Fiona Hyslop MSP who is supportive of the cycle circuit commented;
“This is fantastic news for the Linlithgow Community Development Trust and all who will benefit from the local cycle circuit in Linlithgow and Beyond and I was pleased that the Scottish Transport Minister Humza Yousaf visited LCDT while he was taking part in the Pedal for Scotland event last year to hear more about this project.”
A key local stakeholder in the project is the West Lothian Clarion Cycling Club who run weekly coaching sessions for youth riders.
Ewen Fulton, their Youth President, says “We have a massive waiting list and are at full capacity at our present coaching venues. The circuit is crucial to helping us get more kids experiencing the simple joys of riding a bike”.
The cycle circuit will also be a centre for all abilities and hand cyclists can use the specially designed circuit.
Hand cyclist Mike Thomas says “The track will be the perfect place for people to learn how to use hand cycles and adapted bikes in a traffic-free safe environment.”
Depute Provost Dave King, Executive Councillor for Culture and Leisure, stated “West Lothian Council are delighted to support Linlithgow Community Development Trust develop a closed loop cycling facility in Linlithgow”.Cllr King said “The significant financial contribution provided by the council will assist Linlithgow Community Development Trust deliver a fantastic facility for community participation and progression in cycling”.
The next step for the campaign is to secure other targeted grants and undertake fundraising activities to make the track a reality.