Monday, 23 January 2012

South Shore Bike Park needs you!

Where South Shore bike park will go (Pic: Christchurch Borough Council)

Christchurch Borough Council is proposing to build a bike park, including skills area and pump track, at Chewton Bunny in Highcliffe, Dorset. It's got funding in place, but without your help it may never happen. The Council needs lots of positive responses to its public consultation and there's not much time left.

The site, at the foot of Chewton Bunny (, overlooks Highcliffe Beach and the sea. It's already used by riders even though there's not a great deal there beyond a couple of earth banks. The proposal also includes a picnic area and improvements to access paths, bringing benefits to all users, not just riders. It'd be a great asset to the area and Christchurch Borough Council already has funding lined up.

That's the good news. The bad news is that getting the park built depends on the outcome of a public consultation, carried out by post. Inevitably, having to fill in paper forms and post them plays right into the hands of that particular breed of elderly local with nothing better to do than complain about stuff, and the naysayers have the upper hand right now. The opposition is well organised, and if there are more responses against than for, the park won't get built.

So, with just a few days to go – the consultation ends on 3 February – South Shore Bike Park needs your help. All the background information is at, but the main thing you need is the consultation response form itself:

The questionnaire is just the last two pages. The key questions are “Do you agree with the proposal to improve Chewton Bunny?” and “Do you agree with the need to provide a defined mountain bike area at Chewton Bunny?”, which could both do with ticks in the Agree box.

Every response counts, so everyone in a household can fill one in and send it – it's Freepost so it's only the cost of paper and envelopes, and you can stuff several in one envelope. The bike park proposal is pitched at kids, so the more of them lend their support the better. The proposal desperately needs support from more under 25s, ideally local ones.

Please print out the last two pages, fill them in, stick them in an envelope and send to:

Open Spaces & Countryside Team
Response Licence No. BH575
Christchurch Borough Council
Civic Offices
BH23 1AZ

Please do it now – responses have to be on the Council's desk by Friday 3 February 2012.

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