South Ayrshire ‘road cycling park’ – first in Scotland


South Ayrshire’s ambition to host the first ‘road cycling park’ in Scotland took a step closer this week with the launch of a new website commissioned by South Ayrshire Council via the South Carrick Community Sports Hub ? the Ayrshire Alps Cycle Park website

The new website is the first step towards the creation of an on-road trail centre, climbs are graded green to black, to attract new cyclists and also to appeal to new sportive riders and experienced racers. Information on all the climbs including downloadable GPS files, journey planning details, details on local facilities and the option for cyclists to log on and register each climb they complete is there to access any time of the day or night.

The official launch took place in the car park in Straiton, where many people start their cycle ride when tackling the famous Nick o’ the Balloch cycle route.

Councillor John McDowall, Sustainability and Environment Portfolio Holder for South Ayrshire Council said: “The site showcases the fantastic cycling in and around the South Carrick area, with 15 categorised climbs that will inspire people to get out their bikes, settle into their saddles and experience the Ayrshire Alps. Cycling is an environmentally friendly way to travel whether it is for competitive cycling, to improve mental or physical health or to and from work.”

The concept for the park came from Christopher Johnson, a local race organiser, he said: “I was speaking to partners in the Council about creating a legacy from the cycling events in the South Carrick area when it struck me that there is nowhere else in Scotland that offers the same fantastic road cycling. Within a fifteen mile radius we have an amazing selection of testing hill climbs, on quiet roads and in beautiful scenery ? far more than even most local cyclists are aware of. It is not unusual for me to cycle 40 miles in the park and come across less than 10 vehicles – that’s one for every four miles travelled.”

The area is well known to racing cyclists, with top professionals including Mark Cavendish and Chris Boardman, who have competed in the Girvan Stage Race. 

A live pilot website has now been running for over six months and has attracted huge interest from cyclists across the UK and beyond. South Ayrshire Council commissioned the new site and is currently investigating signage options for the area.  It is hoped that with the huge popularity of cycling and rise in sales of road bikes, many cyclists will

choose to come to South Ayrshire to sample the fantastic terrain, and tranquil environment.

Councillor Bill Grant, Economic Development, Tourism and Leisure Portfolio Holder said: “The new website will benefit local cyclists and people thinking about planning or visiting South Ayrshire for a cycling challenge. With increased numbers of cyclists travelling to the area local businesses will have an opportunity to get involved, feeding hungry cyclists and providing accommodation. This initiative will boost the Carrick economy.”

To celebrate the launch of the Ayrshire Alps, the Ayr Roads Cycling Club will host a cycling festival on 17 and 18 August 2013, it will include road racing, audax (long distance cycle with a maximum completion time) and a youth race in Girvan.  The success of events like the David Bell Memorial and the Graeme Obree Sportive demonstrate the quality of road cycling Ayrshire offers, with climbs such as Nick o’ the Balloch, Tairlaw and the Screws. The cycling festival will show case some of the lesser known climbs in the park area including Carleton and Knockgardner.

All News Articles

Discover treasured moments in Ayrshire & Arran

03 Sep 2015
Ayrshire & Arran is where you can create your own treasured moments. Watch our video and discover some of the reg... more


31 Aug 2015
The Ballantrae Smugglers were delighted to receive a message that La Malouine a twin masted French Brigantine tall sh... more

Ballantrae Food Festival 2015

19 May 2015
The windy weather on Sunday 10 May, didn't deter almost four thousand people from turning up for the first ever Balla... more

Ballantrae Smugglers' Festival 2015 and a look back at previous years

28 Nov 2014
Ballantrae celebrates its’ colourful smuggling history with a week of events and activities for all ages. Go to YouTu... more

Doors Open Day in South Ayrshire

28 Aug 2014
The weekend  of the 6th and 7th of September 2014 sees the return of the Doors Open Day in South Ayrshire and ot... more


15 Jul 2014
Observant travellers in South Ayrshire will have noticed new “Welcome to Carrick, Ayrshire” road signs marking the ... more

Girvan now has a new VIP in town.

05 Jun 2014
The Girvan VIP (Visitor Information Point) was officially opened on the 31st of May 2014 and is based on the ground f... more

Practical Tourism Workshops

05 Jun 2014
The Carrick Tourism Business Network in conjunction with the Carrick Rural Opportunities Project  are holding a ... more

Carrick Community Heritage Trail on the BBC

17 Jan 2014
The Carrick Community Heritage Trail has been featured on the BBC News. Please follow the link for the clip:  ht... more

‘Ayrshire Smiles’ online

20 Sep 2013
Smiles all round at Ayrshire Business WeekAs part of the excellent range of events and activities scheduled for Ayrsh... more