A brand-new mountain bike trails track has opened in Lancashire.

The Tawd Valley MTB Trails opened last week in the beautiful woodland setting of Tawd Valley Park in Skelmersdale.

Funding for the Mountain Bike Track project was secured in early 2020 by West Lancashire Borough Council using Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) monies as match funding for a £25k Sport England Community grant.

Installation of the track has been overseen by the council's rangers team and began in November 2021 and has recently been completed.

An incredible effort was shown from Friends of Tawd Valley and local residents who've lent a hand during 'dig days' - a critical part of the success of this project, with the input of the local community being crucial to the longevity and success of this facility going forward.

Portfolio holder for leisure, Councillor Yvonne Gagen, said: "I'm delighted people will be able to visit the beautiful Tawd Valley Park, with its greenery and fresh air while keeping fit and having fun.

"The priorities of the Council include creating empowered, engaged and inclusive communities and making sure everyone is healthy and happy.

"This new track, with all of the benefits it will bring, is a great example of how we are delivering on our priorities.

"The community is at the heart of this project and it's great to see local businesses and community groups joining together with us to deliver a really valuable and accessible outdoor facility to the people of the Borough.

"Congratulations to everyone involved, including our fantastic rangers team."

Hannah Murphy from WLBC Ranger Service has been responsible for all aspects of this project and said: "This facility will be an incredible addition to the local area, allowing free and unrestricted access for people of all ages to come and enjoy mountain biking".

Highlighting the community spirit, she also noted that the facility can help to improve 'physical, mental and social wellbeing' of young people in the area'.

Future engagement plans for the facility include free MTB hire and courses for local schools, MTB coaching courses through West Lancs College, regular volunteer 'dig days' to assist with the maintenance of the track, MTB races and active lifestyle promotional events.

The track was officially opened by the Mayor of West Lancashire, Councillor Gordon Johnson on Saturday January 15.

The track is situated at the far end of Summer Street, in a raised compartment of woodland to the east of Our Lady Queen of Peace High School, Skelmersdale.

Lancashire Telegraph: