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Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform and Islands, Mairi Gougeon, today (28 June) visited Forestry and Land Scotland’s (FLS) foundational £6 million Glentress Masterplan development to learn how it will bring a social, economic and tourism boom for the Tweed valley and the wider Scottish Borders area.

Hailed as an exemplar project that will benefit local people and businesses, tourists and mountain bikers, the main phase of trails works – delivered through an accelerated programme - has been delivered on time, to specification and on budget.

This achievement has been integral to Glentress becoming an event host in the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championship events (6 - 12 August).

The completed phases include 16km of new mountain bike trails and routes - such as a multi-user path, mountain biking taster trails, a new trailhead, new network trails and expanded infrastructure.

It is anticipated that – every year - the revamped Glentress will help draw over 350,000 visitors to the area and inject around £1 million into the local economy.

Ms Gougeon, said;

“This is a major redesign for Glentress that was intended from the start to broaden the appeal of this amazing destination and increase its value for the local area, businesses and  communities, and for Scotland’s economy.

“In restating its position as a top-flight attraction and with enhanced event capacity, the new Glentress will not only have a huge impact on the health and wellbeing of thousands of visitors, tourists and riders but will also positively impact the local economy.  

“The local community enthusiasm for this project is fantastic and it’s great that in a public vote to decide the new trail names, we had responses from over 1000 people.

“This has been a phenomenal, high-pressure project that has demanded the very best from everyone involved. FLS has done a fantastic job in marshalling the behind-the-scenes team that has brought this to fruition.”

Reinvigorated to diversify the appeal of the destination by offering something for everyone Glentress will now, more than ever, be the place to go for families, young people, novice riders, adaptive riders and for the mountain biking community.

The public vote to name the new trails settled on ‘Apple Peel’ (graded green), ‘Turn and Burn’ (blue), ‘Smells Like Tweed Spirit’ (red), and Castle Black (black).

With the improvements made to its events hosting capacity , Glentress is also now well positioned to be in the running to host major mountain biking events, such as the forthcoming 2023 UCI Cycling World Championship events (6 - 12 August).

The Masterplan trail works will be augmented by the £30million construction of 56 Forest Holidays environmentally sensitive cabins and the construction of a new Mountain Bike Skills Park, which FLS will begin after the event has concluded.  

There will be a phased site handover from 10 -31 July to allow event organisers to finalise course arrangements and site dressing.

Notes to editors

  1. Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) manages forests and land owned by Scottish Ministers in a way that supports and enables economically sustainable forestry; conserves and enhances the environment; delivers benefits for people and nature; and supports Scottish Ministers in their stewardship of Scotland's national forests and land.

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  3. Media enquiries to Paul Munro, Media Manager, Forestry and Land Scotland Media Office 07785 527590 or