A new mountain biking centre has been launched with the help of SIS investment: Laggan Wolftrax in Strathmashie near Laggan.
The centre has been set up as a social enterprise by Laggan Forest Trust, a charity with a trading arm, at Forestry Commission Scotland’s popular Laggan Wolftrax mountain bike trails.
The new centre includes a bike shop offering hire, retail and repair services, a café and able to offer conference space and courses in orienteering, bike maintenance and first aid to local schools, colleges, community groups and the public. The facility has already created five new local jobs and it is hoped that it will help to attract many more visitors to the area to help raise the profile of mountain biking amongst young people.
Laggan Wolftrax MTB Trails were constructed by Forestry Commission Scotland in 2004 and is regarded as one of the top trail destinations in the UK with 30km of mountain biking trails from gentle green runs to extreme black grade runs for the adventurous mountain biker. Use of the trails is free and attracts more than 14,000 visitors per year.
The new centre was made possible thanks to investment from the Cairngorm National Park Authority (CNPA), who helped to fund the centre, and Social Investment Scotland (SIS) who provided investment for the café development. Clad in wood and situated adjacent at the foot of the mountain biking trails, the facility boasts wonderful views of the surrounding mountains.
The centre was officially opened in 2015 by Drew Hendry, MP for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey. Speaking at the event he said: “I am delighted to officially open this brilliant facility. As well as creating local jobs the centre is a welcome addition to the local tourism industry. It is a great example of what can be accomplished when organisations come together with a shared vision. I look forward to seeing a healthy rise in fun loving people of all ages, not only the young, taking up mountain biking over the coming months.”
Alastair Davis, Chief Executive Social Investment Scotland
“It’s fantastic to see one of the UK’s top mountain bike trail destinations having established itself as a social enterprise so that the success of the sport in Scotland can be translated back into benefit for the community. This new centre will allow the business to generate revenue which can be used to deliver even more social impact. We look forward to seeing the organisation develops in the coming years.”