Press Release

Manon Carpenter backs Trails for Wales

Manon Carpenter
Manon Carpenter supports Trails for Wales and so should you!
Ahead of the UCI MTB World Championships in Cairns, Australia, now retired Welsh world mountain bike champion Manon Carpenter has added her support to Cycling UK’s Trails for Wales campaign in a short video.

Trails for Wales campaign is a joint call from Cycling UK and OpenMTB to support the Welsh Government’s proposed changes to open up rural spaces for cycling where appropriate. 

The Welsh Government’s consultation, "Taking forward Wales’ sustainable management of natural resources”, proposes changes to allow cycling and horse riding on footpaths where suitable, a move welcomed by Cycling UK and OpenMTB in their consultation response.

Currently, cycling and horse riding are only permitted on 21% of the entire rights of way network in Wales. This prevents people using many tracks and trails which are eminently suitable for cycling, whilst allowing them to cycle on muddy bridleways a 4x4 would struggle to cope with.

The campaign has resonated with the public, as after just two weeks, Trail for Wales has over 4,500 signatures in support. 

Manon Carpenter said: “I think the Welsh Government are 100% right to encourage the population to get out and enjoy being outside and in the Welsh countryside because it’s a great asset and it’s a great way to spend your time. It would be great to see the Welsh Government lift restrictions. 

“I support Trails For Wales because I think it will allow for bigger and better adventures and days out on the bike. Head to www.cyclinguk.org/trails-for-wales to lend your support too.”

Notes to Editors: 
  1. To take action in support of Trails for Wales, go to: https://action.cyclinguk.org/page/13078/action/1?ea.tracking.id=PR
  2.  Cycling UK, the national cycling charity, inspires and helps people to cycle and keep cycling, whatever kind of cycling they do or would like to do. Over a century’s experience tells us that cycling is more than useful transport; it makes you feel good, gives you a sense of freedom and creates a better environment for everyone. www.cyclinguk.org
  3. OpenMTB is a network of representatives from mountain biking groups across England and Wales – including advocates, volunteer trail builders, guides, writers and more. www.openmtb.org.uk
  4. Cycling UK’s consultation response is dedicated to the late Mike Hall, who supported the original Trails for Wales campaign saying, “Bikes are brilliant, and the countryside is for everyone.” The Executive Summary and consultation response are available for download at: https://www.cyclinguk.org/blog/mark-slater/trails-wales
  5. “Taking forward Wales’ sustainable management of natural resources” is available for download at: https://consultations.gov.wales/consultations/taking-forward-wales-susta... (see Chapter 4)
  6. Cycling UK campaigned for increased access in Wales with its Trails for Wales campaign in 2015, www.cyclinguk.org/campaign/trails-wales following the Welsh Government consultation: ‘Improving opportunities to access the outdoors for responsible recreation’ http://gov.wales/consultations/environmentandcountryside/improving-oppor.... The Green Paper received 5,796 total responses, with over 4,000 responses backing Cycling UK’s calls for adoption of Scottish-style access laws.
  7. Cycling UK’s Rides of Way survey, infographic and tables are available for download at: www.bit.ly/cyclinguk-ridesofway
  8. Cycling UK has a long-established history of facilitating better access to the countryside. In 1968 Cycling UK secured access for cycles to use bridleways. The organisation later fought successfully for a presumed access policy in the Scottish Land Reform Act (2003), and ensured that the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act (2006) included provision for restricted byways rights to be claimed on the basis of past cycle use.
  9. Outdoor Access Wales is an alliance formed of Cycling UK, OpenMTB, the British Horse Society, Ramblers Cymru, BMC, Waters Wales, Disabled Ramblers, Cambrian Caving Council and Open Spaces Society. www.outdooraccesswales.org

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