Full speed ahead for new cycle hub!

Steven Burke
Steven Burke
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It’s full speed ahead for the new Steven Burke closed road circuit and sports hub for Pendle!

Coun. Joe Cooney, Leader of Pendle Council, this week announced two wins for the development of the state of the art sports hub.

The council has been successful in its bid to win £170,000 from British Cycling towards the new closed road circuit, which will include lighting to extend its use over the winter months.

And planning permission has also granted for the exciting new sports facility.

“It’s a win win situation,” said Coun. Cooney.

Work will start next month to create the new closed road circuit around the cricket and football pitches at Swinden Playing Fields on the Nelson-Colne boundary.

The closed road circuit should be complete by the end of March, with work on the lighting, car park and pavilion finishing around August.

British Cycling’s Chief Executive Ian Drake said: “British Cycling is very pleased to partner with Pendle Council and other funders to build this fantastic new cycling facility.

“The new circuit will allow many more young people in the North West to participate in cycling and help develop the sport in the region even further.

“Last year we made significant progress in delivering new facilities, with closed road circuits opening in Bath and York and a Mountain Bike trail in Manchester.

“But in order to continue to build participation, we need to create a new network of traffic-free cycle sport facilities with appropriate facilities such as this.

“We are very excited with the development and look forward to the opening in 2014.”

The new closed road circuit will be named after Pendle’s Olympic gold medallist Steven Burke and will be suitable for complete beginners right up to prospective Olympic champions.

It will be used by local schools as well as being suitable for disabled people using specially adapted bikes through the Wheels For All project led by Pendle Leisure Trust.

Steven Burke said it was “an honour” to have the hub named after him.

“The Hub will be fantastic for Pendle and for getting boys and girls into cycling.

“It’s a great sport that will stay with them for life,” said Steven, who is in training for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

In addition to the British Cycling funding, Pendle Council and Cycle Sport Pendle have successfully won £150,000 from Sport England’s Inspired Facilities fund.

Peter Boast, of Cycle Sport Pendle, has been pursuing the vision of a cycling hub in Pendle for the last five years.

He worked on the successful bids with Pendle Council, cycling clubs and local schools.

He said: “It’s been a great team effort and it’s fantastic that our vision of a wonderful hub for cycling; including coaching, racing and cycling for leisure, will become a reality.

“Pendle Council, its Colne and Nelson Area Committees and the Lancashire Environment Fund have already provided £150,000 for this new facility.

“The additional funding from British Cycling means we can start work!

Steven Burke said: “I’ve no doubt the closed road circuit will help in my preparations for Rio Olympics in 2016!

“But more importantly it will get youngsters out on the closed road circuit and hopefully get the same opportunities as me.”

The combined funding will pay for the old pavilion at Swinden to be refurbished and the car park will be resurfaced to attract cyclists, cricketers and footballers from all over Pendle to the Steven Burke Sports Hub.