Young cyclists were hurtling round corners with huge smiles on their faces when a new ‘Pump Track’ officially opened in Yeovil on Wednesday 30 September.
The project, which has been led by South Somerset District Council, followed consultation during the summer which highlighted a lot of enthusiasm for local cycling facilities. It is hoped that the track – which is located near Wyndham Park in Yeovil – will be the start of more cycling facilities in South Somerset.
Funding for the Pump Track has come from contributions from housing developers and from County Councillor Tony Lock who allocated funding from his Health & Wellbeing budget. Cllr Lock said, “Cycling is a great pastime and an activity people can enjoy throughout their lives to help lead a healthy lifestyle. I’m pleased to be able to support this fantastic facility, which provides a place for young and old to develop their cycling skills and keep fit at the same time.”
Robert Parr, Senior Play & Youth Facilities Officer at South Somerset District Council, explains more about the Pump Track, “A pump track is a closed circuit that can be ridden by using and up and down ‘pumping’ motion to propel the bicycle forward instead of pedalling.
“The narrow track and tight corners make for an exciting ride, which you can ride as fast or as slow as your ability allows. For those people new to this experience we recommend you make sure your bike is in working order with brakes and wearing a helmet and safety equipment.”
The track forms part of a proposed Bike Park for this site. The potential park could include features such as dirt jumps, mountain bike trails, north shore features and a skills area all of which would provide more cycling facilities for Yeovil and South Somerset.
Carla Somerville, who went to the opening of the Pump Track, said, “This track is a fantastic facility for all ages and abilities, it’s something that adults down to toddlers can use and balance bikes will be great to ride on there too. It is long overdue to have a track for bikes in Yeovil and from the amount of people that rode on it Wednesday evening, it goes to show it is greatly welcomed!”
Kate Sheppard, Community Empowerment Officer at Knightstone Housing said, “This project has had our support throughout and it’s great to see new facilities provided that our residents can now access and enjoy.”
Cllr Sylvia Seal, South Somerset’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture added, “Judging by the amount of people who turned up on the first evening the facility is going to prove very popular. The Pump Track is part of South Somerset District Council’s ongoing work to increase and improve play opportunities for children and young people in the district.
“Cycling has never been more popular and the Pump Track should tap into that excitement whilst also helping to promote healthier lifestyles and green travel opportunities.”
Photos are from the Pump Track opening on Wednesday.
Pump4 left to right, Charlie Coward (Healthy Lifestyles Officer, SSDC), Rob Parr (Senior Play & Youth Facilities Officer, SSDC), Cllr Tony Lock, Natalie Ross (Neighbourhood Development Officer – South, SSDC), Cllr David Recardo