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moun ta in bik ing

The home of mountain biking One of the fastest growing sports in Scotland, mountain biking is creating a massive buzz. Now a number of stakeholders, including the Scottish government, have got behind the sport with the intention of making the country the European mountain bike capital. Kath Hudson reports


ver the past few years, mountain biking

podiums and generally create national pride through

has been the main way my family spend

elite success and world class trails. Another aim, which

our free time. We love the fresh air, the

is outlined in the strategy as being intangible, but just

views and being outside in nature; my

as important, is “simply making people happier.”

husband finds it great stress relief; my 13 year old daughter finds it

Growth business

empowering and my 11 year old son

Mountain biking is already big business in Scotland,

likes the buzz of air time and going downhill fast.

contributing £105m of Gross Value Add (GVA) to the

The sport has so many benefits that I’m sure the

economy in 2015. With the right stewardship, it is estimated

world would be a better place if everyone rode an off

it could be worth £158m (GVA) by 2025. The global market

road bike on a regular basis. Scotland agrees. Its new six

for bike products is expected to be $65bn by 2025, with the

year strategy for mountain biking seeks to embed the

e-bike market alone having the potential to be worth $25bn.

sport into the country’s lifestyle and culture, using it to

These figures have caught the attention of the

boost the economy – through tourism and innovation

Scottish government, which is backing the strategy and

– to improve mental and physical health through

providing funding for the next three years for further

grassroots participation; support its elite riders to get

development of the sport and to fund the Mountain

The Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland Launched in 2014, the Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland is a joint initiative headed by Edinburgh Napier University and Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland, with project partner, Scottish Enterprise. A world first, the centre is helping to bring Scottish mountain biking products and services to an international audience. It provides businesses with a range of services, including market research, business development, knowledge transfer, concept and product testing, demonstration days and product launches.

It is estimated that mountain biking in Scotland could be worth £158m by 2025


Issue 3 2019

So far it has worked with 250 Scottish businesses, helping them to create innovative cycling products and services. Aggregated annual turnover by these companies has increased by £13.5m and products worth more than £16m to the Scottish economy have been created. Under plans outlined in the strategy, this centre will be extended into an innovation district.