Littlehouse Media

The new Pentland Trail Centre – The future for Edinburgh biking

In 2023 Scotland will host the World Championships for all cycling disciplines including mountain biking.


Two local businessmen are behind a new mountain bike trail centre that could revolutionise cycle participation in East Central Scotland.


Proposals for the creation of The Pentland Trail Centre, a publicly accessible and family-focused mountain bike trail centre, supported by a relevant leisure based commercial development, will be presented at an open public consultation on Tuesday 5 March 2019 at Swanston Golf Clubhouse, 111 Swanston Road, Edinburgh, EH10 7DS, between 14.00 and 19.00 where feedback and comments are invited.


The site for the trail centre is located within the boundary of the former Lothianburn Golf Course, sitting inside both the City of Edinburgh city boundary and the Pentland Hills Regional Park.


The easy to access Pentland Trail Centre will offer an excellent introduction to traffic-free cycling for kids and their families, as well as more challenging cross-country trails for Edinburgh and Midlothian’s estimated 260,000 cyclists.


The terrain and location of the site is ideal for 10.5km of high quality and fun mountain bike trails to suit all abilities (from green route for beginners to red route for the more experienced).  Other outdoor activities to suit a wide range of ages and interests are being considered for the site.  These include a high ropes course, a zipline and an alpine roller luge.


Developed from a 2014 Feasibility Study and subsequent public consultation, The Pentland Trail Centre is an initiative of Hillend Leisure Ltd, a new company established by Alastair McClung (Swanston Farms, the landowner of the Lothianburn site) and Stuart Wright (Advie Properties and formerly responsible for Dobbies’ development activities). Both are keen mountain bikers and qualified Mountain Bike Leaders.  They have the vision of bringing land ownership, leisure management and leisure-based property development together to deliver a rare opportunity right next to Edinburgh.


The outdoor trail centre, occupying more than 80% of the site, will be supported by a commercial development to include café facilities, changing facilities, relevant retail, office space and accommodation ‘pods’.  It will be located in the valley to the rear of the Steading Inn and between the northern slopes of the Pentland Regional Park and the central ridge that runs from the old golf clubhouse up to the T woods.


Alastair McClung stated: “Our passion is to introduce mountain biking to a much wider audience, on the perfect site, right next to the city. It’s the ideal use of the old golf course site and is a perfect gateway to the rest of the Pentland Hills. By introducing a commercial element the project can move from a vision to reality”


The suitability of the former Lothianburn golf course for a mountain bike trail centre was highlighted in a 2014 Feasibility Study. A subsequent public consultation of the proposals recorded very high levels of local support (more than 96%).


The aims of the Pentland Trail Centre project have been supported by Scottish Cycling as the ideal development to improve cycling participation, with good traffic free trails easily accessible from the City of Edinburgh and the Lothians.



Graeme McLean, Project Manager for Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland at Scottish Cycling, said: “We look forward to being involved in the consultation process for the new Pentland Trail Centre development, and to understand further how it is going to increase participation in mountain biking in Edinburgh and the surrounding area.”




Media contact

Paddy Cuthbert | Littlehouse Media | E: [email protected]

M: +44 (0)7913 951717


Images attached – Please Credit David Cheskin

Further images and captions can be downloaded here – Please credit David Cheskin


Notes to Editors

Pre-Application Consultation for the new Pentland Trail Centre


A public exhibition of the proposals for the new Pentland Trail Centre.  A number of displays concentrating on the broad concept of the trail centre and development will inform visitors of the aims of the project, the initial concept and background details.


Members of the project team will be on hand throughout to talk to visitors about the project and answer their questions.


Questionnaires to gauge public support for the initial proposals for the trail centre will be available for the public to fill out.


Ground Floor Suite, Swanston Golf Clubhouse, 111 Swanston Road, Edinburgh, EH10 7DS


Tuesday 5 March 2019


14.00 to 19.00


A pre-Application Consultation for a mountain bike trail centre in 2015

An extremely positive public consultation process for the original project mountain bike and activity centre plans was undertaken in March 2015.  82% of the responses were unequivocal in their support, with a further 14% offering qualified support. There was considerable excitement about the project with many offers to help and get involved at a community level. The comments also highlighted the perceived very real benefits to the local community and Edinburgh.  The project was put on hold as funding options for the project were explored.


The main themes that got regular mentions at the 2015 Pre-Application consultation for the trail centre facility were:

  • Accessibility to mountain biking for locals and the City as a whole
  • Ideal learning environment for young cyclists and newcomers to the sport
  • Gateway to Pentlands, improved accessibility and incentive to participate in outdoor activities
  • Good use of land
  • Adds facilities to the local area
  • Good for schools and families with children
  • Reduces need to travel to other trail centres
  • Promotes healthy lifestyle
  • Employment for locals
  • Limited impact on environment
  • Compliments existing range of activities


Edinburgh’s Physical Activity and Sport Strategy

(CEC Culture and Sport Committee, March 2014)

“Cycling has a valuable role to play as a means of transport, a leisure activity and as a sport. Edinburgh has one of the highest cycling levels of all urban areas in Scotland but more will be done to continue increasing all forms of cycling.”


Scottish Cycling Facilities Strategy

(Scottish Cycling, April 2014)

“The future growth and success of the sport is fundamentally linked, therefore, to re-establishing the importance of dedicated cycle-sport facilities and to securing adequate funding and support to provide safe and accessible facilities for developing riders and racing.”

You Might Also Like

Epic Halloween tale of ‘Ned vs Monster’ in the Outdoor Capital

Scotland’s mountain bike Enduro World Series qualifier sold out in record time

Muckin’ good discounts for a muckin’ good 2019 event programme

SYHA partners with Ayrshire College for valuable volunteer experience

New hydro scheme powers Scottish mountain resort

Fife farmland to host the new Eliminator MTB Weekender Festival

POC headline sponsor for Scottish Enduro Series for sixth year

Enduro World Series Qualifier, Kinlochleven – Race Report

300 Dutch adventurers to run, bike and kayak across Scotland

Bikes. Dirt. Downhill. Bike Night at The Fort William Mountain Festival 2016

Young volunteers wanted to run IRONKIDS Scotland running events

Margo Paterson appointed as CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland

Nevis Range moving forward with interim CEO Rod Pashley

The Fort William Mountain Festival 2018 – Celebrate the great outdoors

Changing times at Nevis Range Mountain Experience!

Jura, the Border Collie, trains to become the first Ski Patrol rescue dog at Nevis Range

Winner covers 319km at The UK 24hr Mountain Bike Championships

Best seat in the house! Where to catch Stage 1 – The OVO Energy Tour of Britain

No Fuss running events given Compression boost in 2018

Enduro riders, prepare yourselves for a Highland Clan battle!

Summer Youth Hostel Returns to Glasgow

Top award for World renowned Scottish landscape photographer, Colin Prior

Hostelling Scotland opens four summer youth hostels in 2018

Scottish Climbing Instructor, Tim Miller, wins Youth Mountain Culture Award

Big Biking October – two International bike events for the Outdoor Capital

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2019/20

Fort William has all the Mòd cons

Huge demand for ultrarunner Jasmin Paris at Fort William Mountain Festival

Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival 2018 – The Long Road To Adventure

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company is being supercharged

Rob Cochrane wins 2019 Scottish Youth Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

Route announcement confirmed for HSBC City Ride in Edinburgh

Nevis Range partner with Disability Snowsport UK for Winter 18/19

Media Advisory – UK’s highest Shinty match to promote tourism in Lochaber

Planning on holidaying at home? Give hostelling a go!

Entries open for SKI-AN-DURO, Scotland’s new ski and mountain bike Enduro

IRONKIDS activity programmes promote healthy and active lifestyles – SUN, FUN, RUN!

World teams heading to Edinburgh for OVO Energy Tour of Britain

‘Death Zone’ mountaineer, Nirmal Purja, to headline Fort William Mountain Festival 2020

No Fuss add two International MTB events to 2018 programme

‘A Meeting of Minds’ – An online event to celebrate Scotland’s aquaculture sector

Video series to showcase apprenticeships in the West Highlands launched

The ultimate runners’ sightseeing tour of Edinburgh returns

Immerse yourself in Lochaber Ideas Week 2019

Videos highlight the benefits of apprenticeships in the West Highlands

Discover Scotland’s ‘Braw Buildings’ with Hostelling Scotland

Inverness Youth Hostel gets a fresh new look

SKI-AN-DURO, a new ski and mountain bike Enduro for Scotland

Archibald urges Edinburgh locals to sign up for HSBC UK City Ride

Hot water on tap for Loch Ossian Youth Hostel

Run Scotland in two days with the new Ultra Tour of Arran

The Ultra Tour of Arran, a big draw for international adventure tourists

Cyclists Get into Gear for Angus Cycling Festival

Tour De Ben Nevis and and Ultra Marathon De Ben Nevis – Race Report

Run Scotland on The Ultra Tour of Arran

Millburn Academy ensures a warm welcome to Inverness Youth Hostel

Another Muckin’ great line-up of mountain bike events announced for 2017

Lochaber community is pulling together to give Nevis Range a lift after lockdown!

Fair City Enduro – The UK’s Most Spectacular Mountain Bike Race

Young people invited to collaborate in Muckin’ good summer festivals

Mark Cavendish to return at the OVO Energy Tour of Britain

National Funding Boost for Cream o’ the Croft and The Eliminator

SYHA’s Glasgow Metro youth hostel awarded 3 stars by VisitScotland

Chris O’Brien appointed Destination Manager for the Outdoor Capital of the UK

No Fuss for Kinlochleven, the UK’s only Enduro World Series Qualifier

Get your adventure challenge on with Project: Explore

Business Community Programme launched for Lochaber Ideas Week 2018

Gravelfoyle – Gravel Cycling at the heart of Aberfoyle’s new tourism brand

Young event assistants invited to join the IRONKIDS Scotland event team

Lochaber Tourism Day with Cal Mac – Debate, Engage, Network

New massed ultra running tour to challenge Edinburgh’s visitors

Alex Dowsett confirms return to OVO Energy Tour of Britain

Muckin’ good festive discounts on Muckmedden 2018 bike events

Youth development key to Edinburgh Central’s 10th Anniversary

Scran Academy reach 100,000 essential meals delivery milestone

Keith Legge, CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland, steps down after 13 years

A Mucky Duathlon for the Eliminator Bike Festival in Fife

Noel Williams wins 2019 Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

The Falkirk Funduro 2017: mountain biking fun with two capital F’s

Halloween fancy dress mountain bike Enduro returns to Perth

Go Swim Loch Lomond – a new open water event for Scotland

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company sees 80% rise in Lockdown sales

Sporting legend Gavin Hastings to inspire Lochaber at Ideas Week 2017

Nevis Range is making it snow all season long!

SYHA opens new summer youth hostel in Edinburgh

Outdoor Capital Activities and Attractions Expo open for tourism business

Glen Nevis Youth Hostel re-opens after major redevelopment project

One Lochaber Leadership Programme to be launched at Lochaber Ideas Week

Nevis Range to turn back the clock to 1989 to celebrate 30 years of adventure

People are at the heart of SYHA Hostelling Scotland!

Competition Climber, Shauna Coxsey, wins Scottish Youth Ambassador Award

It’s all about head to head bike racing at Fife’s Eliminator

SYHA appoints Lois Marshall as Youth & Volunteer Engagement Manager

Cream O’ The Croft – far more than just a bike festival

Up to 350 riders will take on the Fair City Enduro when it returns to Perth

Paul Merton Visits SYHA’s Loch Ossian Hostel – Paul Merton’s Secret Stations

A new mucky duathlon for the Eliminator Weekender in Fife

Scottish Enduro Series confirms POC as headline sponsor for fifth year

Mountain Bikers Gear Up for a Fun Day’s Night in Falkirk

The Cream of Enduro will rise to the top at Comrie Croft

No Fuss partnerships lead the way for Scotland’s Enduro

Lochaber Tourism Summit 2019, a must-attend event for Highland tourism businesses

New European partnership to upskill adventure tourism in five countries

Muckin’ good mountain bike events launched for 2016

Geraint Thomas and Owain Doull return to OVO Energy Tour of Britain

Former Farrier, Matthew Jackson, appointed Chair of DYW West Highland

Media Advisory – Cancellation of The Mighty Deerstalker, Saturday 03 March 2018, The Scottish Borders

Cream o’ the Croft: three Muckin’ good family festivals rolled into one!

Are you hard enough to take on The Double Stalker?

Muckin’ good news for two wheeled Early Birds

Media Advisory – 500 runners to tame Edinburgh with the inaugural Ultra Tour

Fair City Enduro Confirmed As Scotland’s Only Enduro World Series Qualifier

Fife farm to be transformed for a family bike and outdoor festival

Lochaber’s ‘Connect to Your Adventure’ digital marketing campaign, a huge success

‘Connect To Your Adventure!’ – big success in just 7 weeks

Fort William – the perfect cruise destination

Media Advisory – Images – The Ultra Tour of Edinburgh

Cameron McNeish wins 2018 Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

New Lochaber website aiming high

Danny MacAskill launches video, ‘Danny Daycare’. Best ‘uncle’ ever?

SYHA Hostelling Scotland assist in a Recovery Version

Dr Liz Cameron, Scotland’s voice of business, to headline women’s networking lunch

ITV4 to screen every minute of OVO Energy Tour of Britain live

Two Scottish youth hostels celebrate landmark anniversaries

New look Edinburgh Central Youth Hostel, new era of hostelling in the Capital

Re-Defining the age of adventure as the EMFF returns in February

Hostelling Scotland, a new brand identity unveiled

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2020/21

IRONKIDS Scotland – 3,000 kids to take part in global running series

Nevis Range team up with Endura

#myoutdoorcapital – OCUK to put visitors firmly in the frame

Nevis Range looks forward to reopening in July

Young ‘Fifers’ invited to collaborate in Eliminator Bike Festival

A muckin’ great Audax, perfect for Cream o’ the Croft road cyclists

No Fuss serve up a vindaloo of an off road bike festival

SYHA collaborates with Glasgow Caledonian University

Do we hear Muckwedding Belles in Fife?

Expose yourself the No Fuss way

Nevis Range and Trek announce a partnership for 2018/19

VisitScotland’s Lord Thurso to deliver The Charles Kennedy Memorial Lecture

Hostelling Scotland to temporarily close Youth Hostel network

UK’s first Team Enduro event comes to Comrie Croft, Perthshire

SYHA Hostelling Scotland – building Scottish hostelling for the future

OCUK unveil their new branded gondola at Nevis Range

Coast to Coast – run, bike ride and kayak 105 miles across Scotland

Start your Highland biking adventure at the new Nevis Range Bike School

Danny MacAskill celebrates Edinburgh anniversary with Fringe debut at Circus Hub

Nevis Range, Scotland’s highest snowsports destination, open for business