AN “EXCITING” chapter at Glentress has started as the region waves goodbye to the UCI Cycling World Championships.

Elite bikers from across the globe took on the Borders’ trails during a number of races during the mega event last week.

Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) is now getting ready to complete the final stage of its Glentress Masterplan programme as the UCI team clears the site.

It is anticipated that the car parks will reopen and access will begin to return to normal from this week.

Final stage works include the construction of a new mountain bike skills park, work around the gateway building, final linkage of several of the new trails and the installation of short skills loops of various grades.

Construction work will also resume on 56 holiday cabins.

John Dougan, south region manager at FLS, said: “The UCI 2023 Cycling World Championship events in the Tweed Valley were a great success and helped to put the name Glentress and the wider Borders in front of a millions-strong global TV audience and herald the beginning of a new exciting chapter for Glentress.

“The success of the event was in no small part thanks to what had already been achieved over the last 18 months in terms of delivering the Masterplan, which has already significantly improved the offering for visitors and reinvigorated this amazing attraction, increasing the range of its appeal and further enhancing its value to the area.

“Although the Championships are now over, we’re not resting on our laurels and are looking to add the finishing touches that we couldn’t complete before the event was held. Once fully completed, our regular – and hopefully many new - visitors will soon find a destination that lives up to their expectations and offers something for everyone.”

Trails and features that were built especially for the UCI events, although fit for the purpose of challenging the skills of high-level athletes, were designed to be used on a temporary basis.

They will be deconstructed and repurposed or recycled.

FLS is looking to offer two ‘sandbox’ areas that could accommodate temporary features for future events.

It is also seeking retrospective planning permission to make permanent the start/finish line that will further enhance Glentress’ appeal to large-scale event organisers.

World mountain bike champion Tracey Moseley said: “After all the excitement of watching the best, top-flight athletes taking on the gruelling challenges set for them here at Glentress, it’s time to harness and channel that energy and focus on diversifying the appeal of cycling in all its forms.

“Cycling has the potential to transform lives as well as our way of living, improving physical and mental health and well-being and making our towns and cities safer and cleaner places to live and work.

“The UCI 2023 Cycling World Championships has given us some momentum that will help our efforts to make cycling more inclusive and encourage more people across the country to take on two-wheels.

“Glentress was an outstanding venue that is set to become a beacon for everyone involved in promoting cycling by showing how the one destination can appeal to families, young people, novice riders, adaptive riders as well as the wider mountain biking community.”

The Masterplan works and the cabin build is set to be completed in 2024.

Every year it is anticipated that the revamped Glentress will help draw more than 300,000 visitors to the area and inject around £1 million into the local economy.