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A purpose-built mountain biking trail at the Forestry Commission's Cannock Chase has been voted the best place to ride in the UK by readers of a top biking magazine.
Readers of Mountain Bike Rider (MBR) voted the Monkey Trail as their favourite ‘Reader Trail of the Year’ – putting it higher than all other man-made trails as well as the islands’ thousands of kilometres of bridleway.
Andy Coggins, visitor services manager at Cannock Chase, said:
“It is great news that our newest trail is proving to be so popular with those who ride it.
“This is a ringing endorsement of the Chase Trials Volunteer group who helped in it's design, making the very best use of the topography we have here, and their commitment in helping to build and maintain the trail. It just goes to show what a wonderful job they have done and what a fantastic attraction we have in the forest here at Cannock Chase Forest.”
Journalists from the magazine also included it in their top five favourite places to ride in 2010.
One journalist wrote in December’s edition of the popular magazine:
“After an hour or so of Monkey Magic, everyone was dumbfounded by just how good this short trail was.”
The Monkey Trail was launched at Cannock Chase in April this year. The eight kilometre trail was built as part of a £200,000 improvement in facilities at Cannock Chase by the Forestry Commission.
It features short sharp climbs, long flowing descents, tight twists and turns, as well as berms, rooty drops and narrow flowing singletrack.
The Monkey Trail, which is sponsored by bicycle manufacturer Giant, was built with help from Chase Trails, a local group of volunteers consisting of enthusiastic riders. It was designed by Staffordshire-based specialist trail building firm Clixby’s.
For those interested in having a go of the Monkey Trail, and Cannock Chase’s other trail ‘Follow the Dog’, bike hire facilities are provided by Swinnerton Cycles. For more information on cycle hire at Cannock Forest, contact Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre on 01889 575170 or visit www.bikechase.co.uk.
For more information about recreational facilities at Cannock Forest and other Forestry Commission woodland around the West Midlands visit www.forestry.gov.uk/westmidlands and www.forestry.gov.uk/cannockforest.
Notes to editors
The Forestry Commission is the largest provider of countryside recreation in Britain with responsibility for over one million hectares (2.4 million acres) of forest, woodlands and open countryside. The West Midlands region covers the counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, the West Midlands and parts of Derbyshire and Leicestershire.
Jason Maclean (Environment Manager) on 01889 586593 or email Jason.firstname.lastname@example.org; alternatively contact Andy Coggins on email@example.com