As part of the Highland Perthshire Cycling Events for 2016 a mini, downhill cycling race took place at the Birks of Aberfeldy which was sponsored by Scottish Power.
Open practice took place between 10.30am and 12.30pm, timed race runs began at 1.00pm and there was a prize presentation at 3.30pm. The 1st , 2nd  and 3rd place riders in each category qualified to race at the Mini Down Hill final at the Fort William World Cup.
Downhill1WebDownhill3WebDownhill2WebLocal consternation has been expressed that, while a few occasional tracks and jumps made by youngsters might be tolerable in the Birks, to create obstacles for an organised event is another thing entirely (pictured). As P&K Council is responsible for works conducted on its property the question has been raised about the extent of these made for this event which would normally require planning permission.
One local dog walker told Comment: “Obviously some people in authority knew because of the marketing of the event. If we let this be it will only expand and grow and be used more frequently.
“As a Site of Special Scientific Interest the Birks is entirely the wrong place for this and it needs to be brought to the attention of Scottish Natural Heritage.”
Local Willie Leszke raged “I highlighted the mess last year with bikes going down the Birks and now it seems it is a commercial event. Why are people allowed to decimate the Birks whilst local groups struggle to try and keep things neat and tidy?”
Others added: “Who in their right mind would give them permission to destroy such a beautiful environment?”
And: “This has to be stopped, what a mess, this is not on. Someone is going to get hurt and I hope it will not be a visitor to Aberfeldy. I also think the canyoning here should be stopped.”
Further: “What next! Wild camping, canyoning, maybe some paintballing and ropes hung tarzan style from trees just to add to the mess and destruction these so disrespectful mountain bikers left behind!”
The matter is scheduled to be aired at the next meeting of Aberfeldy Community Council.  


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