The forum was formed by Cycling Scotland in 2010 under the Cycling Action Plan for Scotland, to promote cycle tourism using the Visit Scotland definition of tourism. The forum therefore promoted all non-utility and non-sport cycling, leaving mountain biking to the SMBDC. Ian Aitken (then Chief Executive of Cycling Scotland) was the first Chair and shortly after formation a project manager was appointed for two days a month which meant they basically serviced the meetings. Paul Timms (now Chair CTC Scotland) became Chair in 2012 and in due course, thanks to the generosity of Sustrans, a project manager was appointed for two days a week.
The forum operates informally and comprises attendees from the public and third sectors; it is keen to recruit members from the private sector but thus far has struggled to secure private sector participation. The current membership is shown in the annex. The forum currently meets for about half a day, four times a year; meetings are held in the Central Belt.
The forum has been successful in providing the background information on the economic value of cycle tourism, liaison with the wider industry and drawing together a number of the diverse interests which would not otherwise meet.
The forum is now at a turning point as the current Chair needs to stand down due to business and personal commitments and the funding of the project manager’s post expires in May. It is apparent that there is no new money available from historic sources to continue to fund a project manager.
At its January 2016 meeting the forum considered a number of options, including disbanding, but felt that there was valuable work to be done and members wanted the forum to continue. They considered that at least in the short term they may need to operate without a project manager with members arranging the meetings and taking minutes in rotation.
A new Chair is sought to help guide the forum through what will, at least for a few months, be difficult times. The time commitment is approximately 6 to 8 days per annum with 4 half day meetings (see above) and other activities. The post is unremunerated.
The key roles and responsibilities of the post include:
- Chairing meetings
- Help to develop a strategic direction for the Forum
- Help liaise with government agencies, the third sector and the private sector to help ensure that the benefits of cycle tourism in Scotland are widely advertised and promoted in Scotland, the UK and internationally.
The key skills and experiences required include:
- An interest in promoting leisure cycling
- Ability to work with a diverse range of interests
- Chairing meetings
- Experience of cross sectorial working
An understanding of the current public sector funding landscape would be desirable, as would experience of fostering public / private sector collaborative working.
Any enquires or expression of interest should be addressed to either the present Chair, Paul Timms, (firstname.lastname@example.org or 07748 831219) or Mike Dennison, Project Manager (email@example.com)
P D W Timms
Chair, Cycle Tourism Forum