BLOG rss
30/03/2012 // INFO Leave a comment

Call for review of cycling activity in New Forest


New Forest Cycling

The increasing numbers of mountain bike and road cyclists using the New Forest is continuing to cause conflict it seems.

The New Forest Association (NFA) has joined calls from the Commoners’ Defence Association (CDA), which represents the owners of livestock that roam the area, for stronger regulation of cycle use in the Forest by the Forestry Commission. The New Forest Association is one of the oldest conservation organisations in the world and holds a lot of sway over policy on the upkeep of the New Forest area.

Prosecute riders

The NFA has recently called on the National Park Authority (NPA) to criminally prosecute riders who go off designated routes (prosecutions leading to fines).

The NFA has also pointed to a recent BBC’s Countryfile programme on March 18 that highlighted the practice of “adventure racing” by large scale organised groups on New Forest land as damaging the “fragile” lands of the New Forest.

The Countryfile programme showed footage of competitors racing over mires and heathland that should be protected by the Forestry Commission, according to the NFA. A report on adventure racing showed the BBC’s Countryfile reporter Ellie Harrison participating on a race on such land.

The Forestry Commission admitted it had given the BBC permission to film “adventure racing” in the New Forest but said the programme makers were only given permission to film on approved tracks.

“Unfortunately, the feature did not promote the use of the cycle network sufficiently clearly, or the avoidance of sensitive sites,” the Forestry Association said.

Objections to cycling

The NFA presented its objections on current off-road cycle use in the New Forest to the Verderers Court of the New Forest on March 22. The Verderers Court, which consists of elected members, is a body that was set up to preserve the New Forest’s unique agricultural landscape and is the voice of the many stakeholders who use New Forest land (much of which is still owned by the Crown). Their concerns are then presented to the Forestry Commission.

The NFA want action taken against any business promoting this illegal use of the Forest and want the Forestry Commission to withdraw permission for adventure racing or ensure that it is adequately monitored and does not damage the protected habitat of the New Forest.

Review of cycling activity

The NFA said now more urgent than ever, there had to be a full review of cycling activity on Crown Lands.

In a statement, the NFA told us: “The Association regards the lawful use of cycling not only as beneficial to health but as a means to appreciate the wonderful wildlife and scenery that the New Forest offers.

“There are other forests with off-road tracks that are much better suited and appropriate for high speed mass cycling events. We ask that cyclists and those supporting cycling in the New Forest show consideration and respect for other users and work to protect and enhance the area that they value so much for their recreation.”

For more great cycling news and stories follow us on Twitter or Facebook

See Also

Back the bid to bring the Tour de France to Yorkshire

Brompton Dock set to go nationwide

from Going Going Bike – Auctions, Bike News, Cycle Stuff

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Grab the GGB Weekly Newsletter

and we will send you our second hand bike buying guide.

Search Blogs


Need some jargon translated? Consult the Bikepedia.




Bicycle Sizing Guide

Second hand and used bicycle buying guide

Balance bike racing comes to the UK

Bicycle guide for long distance cycling and touring


The Wheelie Good Round-Up

Sky Ride partners with GGB on Giles Deacon cycling bag

The Wheelie Good Round-Up

Final day of our Raid Pyreneen

Day five on the Raid Pyrenees

Day Four on the Raid Pyrenees

Day Three on the Raid Pyrenees

Day two on the Raid Pyrenees

The Wheelie Good Round-Up

Day one on Raid Pyrenees