This week the Scottish Government and sportscotland launched an £8 million fund to improve cycling facilities across the country.
The national Cycling Facilities Fund will capitalise on the upsurge of interest in cycling by developing a network of accessible, inclusive and inspiring facilities that encourage people of all ages to ride bikes. It will also deliver a tangible benefit which is part of the wider policy objectives driving the forthcoming 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships – Glasgow & Scotland.
The fund, which is open to clubs, education establishments, local authorities or leisure trusts, charitable organisations, community sport hubs and community organisations, has been made possible through a £4 million commitment of Capital funding from Scottish Government and £4 million of National Lottery funding from sportscotland. This significant investment in infrastructure will be delivered over the next two years through a partnership between Scottish Cycling and sportscotland.
The Cycling Facility Fund reinforces our ambition of the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships being more than just an event.
By working in collaboration with partners, including Scottish Cycling and sportscotland, we will drive significant change and progress in Scotland by celebrating the unique power of the bike and all it can bring to our lives whether that be for our physical and mental health, helping the environment or simply making it easier for people to get around.
The projects backed by this fund will inspire more people to get on their bikes, bringing benefits to people across Scotland as an enjoyable leisure activity and an efficient way to improve their health. We want to build on the incredible growth in cycling this year and see even more people choosing to travel to school or work on two wheels.
Our overall aim is for Scotland to become one of Europe’s top cycling nations. The Scottish Government’s commitment to working with the UCI to host the first ever multi-world championships for cycling at one time in one country is a game-changing opportunity for cycling in Scotland.
Clear guidance has been developed by Scottish Cycling and sportscotland to identify priorities to ensure projects can make a lasting impact. Projects can bid for awards up to £100,000 for smaller ‘inspire’ projects and up to £500,000 for Club and Hub projects.
The three key objectives for the fund are to:
- Inspire the nation to cycle by developing accessible, inclusive and inspiring facilities
- Grow and develop club and community cycling through multi-discipline hubs with safe coaching and skills development areas; and
- To develop the events infrastructure by building or upgrading facilities capable of hosting local and regional events.
In August 2023, Glasgow and Scotland will host the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships. This historic and innovative event bring together 13 existing World Championship cycling disciplines into one mega event for the first time. Underpinned by four key policy drivers - participation, transport, tourism and economy - the Championships will be a catalyst for behavioural change across Scotland moving forward.
Through the Cycling Facilities Fund, there is an opportunity to deliver a lasting impact from the Championships by inspiring a new generation of cyclists by creating a network of accessible community facilities to develop the sport at every level.
Detailed guidelines are now available on the sportscotland website and the fund is now open for proposals from interested parties.