Experience a Summer of Cycling

by Sara Barton, 13th July 2023
Summer of Cycling | South of Scotland; Credit: Breakpad Bike Shop
Experience a Summer of Cycling

Alongside this summer’s fabulous UCI Cycling World Championships taking place at Glentress and Dumfries, there are plenty of celebratory fringe events for everyone. Whether it is a ride out or getting some top tips on bike maintenance, trying an e-bike for the first time or watching films about classic races, there is plenty to see and do. Check out all the summer of cycling events in Dumfries & Galloway and the Tweed Valley Fringe in the Scottish Borders. Here are our top tips of not-to-miss events – join in and make the most of the buzz surrounding the UCI Cycling World Championships!

Where: Robert Burns Centre

When: 15 July

The Robert Burns Centre is celebrating the innovations in cycling over the years as part of Dumfries and Galloway’s Summer of Cycling. There will be a working replica of Kirkpatrick Macmillan’s velocipede – the first bicycle – which was invented in Dumfriesshire in 1839! Yes really, Cycling Started Here! More recent developments include some fantastic e-cargo bikes made by Ariel Bikes of Lockerbie with displays and demonstrations. For the children, there will be an activity trail tracing the development of the bicycle, a family activity designing a bike for the future, and archive film showing in the Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre. This superb day should be on any visitor’s To Do list!

See the working replica of Kirkpatrick McMillan’s velocipede at the Robert Burns Centre.

Where: Wheels of Fleet, Gatehouse of Fleet

When: 17-21 July

Do your primary school children need some top tips on how to take care of their bicycle? Do they enjoy fun bike rides? Sign them up for this summer activity week to for great learning experiences. They will discover to maintain, clean and fix their bikes, understand how to look at a bike map, participate in bikes games and rides, and even head off for a bit of bike packing.

There will be workshops for children to learn how to maintain their bikes.

Where: Gladstone Park, Penpont

When: 22,23 July

Just down the road from where Kirkpatrick McMillan invented his Velocipede, Penpont is hosting a celebration of cycling with family-friendly, cycling-related activites, competitions and displays. The mobile bike track from Muckmedden will be on site, perfect to give the younger generation a great time. Need to brush up on your bike safety and skills? There will be SUSTRANS bike skills sessions. And if all this cycling sounds like thirsty work, there’ll be smoothies on hand – mind you, you’ve got to pedal to make it happen on the Smoothie Bike! If you have fancied giving an e-bike a go but aren’t quite sure what to expect, here is your chance to try the bike along with a lesson on how to operate it. And on Sunday there is a mass ride out with BBQ afterwards for riders. A truly spectacular cycling weekend – and it’s Free!

There will be fun for the whole family at the Celebration of Cycling in Penpont.

Where: Robert Burns Centre

When: 25 July

Check out this documentary on the dizzying climax to the 1989 Tour de France. The Last Rider focuses on cyclist Greg LeMond’s remarkable journey to compete in the fiercely contested Tour de France and how he faced down betrayal, childhood abuse and death. It is one of the cycling world’s most inspiring comebacks in history

Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre., Robert Burns centre Film Theatre.
Watch The Last Rider, a documentary about the 1989 Tour de France, at the Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre.

Where: Glen Trool, Galloway Forest Park

When: 29,30 July

Head to Glen Trool and the Galloway Forest Park as it hosts a weekend-long cycling event exploring the Glentrool 7stanes and celebrating the fantastic small biking businesses in the region. There will be plenty of bikes for hire courtesy of Glentrool Cycleworks and Biosphere Bikes. Galloway Hillbillies Bike Club will be facilitating a kid’s agility course and offering coaching too!

Glentrool and the Galloway Forest Park are hosting a cycling event the last weekend in July.

Where: Dalbeattie

When: 5 August

Rocks and Wheels presents the Dalbeattie Bike Fest with a live stream from the UCI Downhill Mountain Bike World Championships taking place in Glentress in the Borders. For those wanting more beyond watching the action, there will be e-bikes to try, cycle tours, food, music, games and more.

You can watch the action live from UCI Downhill Mountain Bike World Championships at Dalbeattie Bike Fest.

Where: Hike & Bike Hub

When: 6 Aug -13 Aug

If you have never been on a bike or have been wanting to try out different types, this is your perfect opportunity. Hire costs are fully covered by the Scottish Borders Council’s Community Cycling Fund – all you have to do is turn up with some ID. The Hike & Bike Hub in Galashiels is providing bikes and e-bikes for the day. Try a short trip around town or explore a little further – there is plenty of info about easy routes nearby tht you can try. Protective equipment like a helmet, high-vis vest and a basic support pack is all provided, and all FREE.  Please call 07476 316242 or email info@hikebikegalashiels.co.uk to book.

Try out a different type of bike for free!

Where: Eastgate Theatre, Peebles

When: 8 August

Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland presents an evening of inspiring speakers and films of global and local leaders who will tell stories of how trails are having a positive impact in their communities. See how mountain bike trails are transforming places and people globally. All profits from the evenings will be put back into the local trail network through the Scottish Trail Fund.

Learn all about the positive impact a trail can have on a local community through an evening of inspirational tales.

Where: Edderston Cross Country & Livery Yard

When: 10 August

While you may be used to riding along the glorious Scottish countryside on two wheels, do you know the correct etiquette when you meet a horse and rider? You both enjoy the glorious outdoors and it only takes a moment to best understand how to share your trail! Join The British Horse Society and DMBinS for a fascinating insight into how horses perceive cyclists and to find out how to approach and pass horses safely.

Do you know the correct procedure when you are sharing the trail or road with horse and riders?

Where: Innerleithen Trails Car Park

When: 11 August

This is a super chance for females young and old to join two local Mountain bike groups for an evening ride around the trails of Innerleithen. There’ll be an easy and an intermediate ride lasting around 2 hours, so make sure you’re happy on your bike for that long and familiar with riding MTB trails. The ride is free but afterwards there’s the chance to partake in the social at Adrenalin Uplift’s Worlds Weekender.

Join two local female MTB clubs for a tour on some fantastic trails.