The Cycle Tourism Forum has been established to enable the public and private sectors to work collaboratively to improve the development, delivery and promotion of cycle tourism in Scotland. The Forum focuses on leisure cycling – cycling that can be done by all on-road, on cycle paths, towpaths and forest roads.
Cycle Tourism Forum are recruiting a new Chair – more info here
The Cycle Tourism Forum was established by Cycling Scotland in April 2010 to enable public sector agencies with a remit for cycling and representatives from the private and third sector to work collaboratively to improve the development, delivery and promotion of cycle tourism in Scotland.
The Cycle Tourism Forum represents leisure cycling, with mountain biking represented by the Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland project. The Forum was previously chaired by Cycling Scotland, but since September 2012 has been chaired by Cyclists’ Touring Club Scotland.
The vision of the Forum is to establish Scotland as a world class cycle destination where the needs of the visitor come first.
A Memorandum of Understanding was developed and initially, the four key areas of focus for the Forum were set as:
- Improve communication and collaboration between stakeholders and the industry with a shared vision to develop and promote cycle tourism in Scotland.
- Co-ordinate research activity to improve a shared understanding of the target markets.
- Co-ordinate marketing efforts to maximise opportunities to raise awareness and grow the value of cycle tourism.
- Develop the cycling product and encourage best practice by making the most of Scotland’s cycling assets and establishing Scotland as a must visit, must return cycling destination.
Subsequently a small amount of funding was secured from member organisations for a Project Manager to work two days a month to progress activity. Meetings of the Forum have, on average, been held quarterly in locations in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Perth. The membership has been expanded from the initial establishment of the Forum.
Sustrans and the Cycle Tourism Forum commissioned Transform Scotland to produce a report entitled The Economic Value of Leisure Cycle Tourism which was launched in June 2013. It estimates that the value of cycle tourism in Scotland ranges between £117 – £239 million per year. A number of recommendations were identified as part of this report and further details on them can be found in the full report.
Read News Release here.
Read the Full Report here.
Leisure Cycling Tourism Guide
The Leisure Cycling Tourism Guide was created help businesses attract cycling tourists. To read the guide click here to view.
Taking the recommendations from The Economic Value of Leisure Cycle Tourism report the Cycle Tourism Forum has developed a work plan which includes the following:
- Good information on cycle routes and opportunities – maps, leaflets, information boards, VIC staff, websites, other digital media – easily available
- The effective marketing of cycle routes and cycle events by organisations and destinations
- The further development and promotion of VisitScotland’s Cyclists Welcome Scheme
- Increased bike parking spaces and bike carrying capacity on public transport
- The development of themed routes by industry and regions to create more cycle routes linking tourist attractions such as castles, whisky and seafood.
- The Scottish Government, local authorities, Sustrans and other organisations continuing to develop new cycle routes and maintain existing ones.
- Useful information, research, best practice, links to other sites etc. available to the cycle tourism industry
- The gathering of improved statistical information to support the development of, and investment in, cycle tourism
To make all this happen, we need to work more closely with the tourism industry. If your business or organisation would like to get involved or to be kept informed of progress, please get in touch.
The Forum is also working with the Scottish Tourism Alliance, as cycling is part of the Nature, Heritage & Activities sector group. This provides an opportunity for cycling to feature as part of the delivery of the National Strategy: Tourism Scotland 2020 and will ensure that Scotland’s cycling assets are developed into more rounded, added value experiences that today’s visitors want.
- Cairngorms National Park Authority
- Cycle Highland Perthshire
- Cycling Scotland
- Cyclists’ Touring Club Scotland (CTC)
- Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland
- Forestry Commission Scotland
- Highland Council (as the Local Authorities representative)
- Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Authority
- Paths for All
- Scottish Canals
- Scottish Enterprise
- Scottish Natural Heritage
- SYHA Hostelling Scotland
- Velo Days
- Wild Scotland
Mike Dennison, Project Manager