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No Trail Building Next Weekend (9th Feb)

2 February, 2014 at 15:00

No Trail Building

There will be no trail building on the 9th February. This is due to the regular Chase Trails volunteers having a safety training session to bring us up to date with new regulations and guidelines.

If you were hoping to lend a hand, don’t worry, we’ll be back to normal from the 16th February – 10am outside Swinnerton Cycles as usual. 😉

Twist & Shout Closure

31 January, 2014 at 15:00

As you’ll no doubt be aware, ‘Twist and Shout’ – the first section of Follow the Dog after you pass under Go Ape – has been closed for around a week and a half.

The current forestry operations in ‘Twist and Shout’ and around the visitor centre will last for approximately 6 weeks. Once complete, we’ll assess the level of damage to determine what repairs are necessary. Depending on the amount of work required, the opportunity may be taken to re-surface that second half of the trail. Please abide by the warning signs and follow the signed diversion. More details to follow once the harvesting is complete.

Paul Weller announces Forestry Commission gigs

13 January, 2014 at 14:00

Paul Weller has confirmed five forest gigs, appearing as part of the Forestry Commission’s Forest Live concert programme in spectacular woodland locations across the country.

It’s been thirty years since Paul Weller first exploded onto the music scene, suited and booted, and armed with statement tunes in The Jam. Blending the best of British with his love of Motown, Weller crafted a new landscape in the UK music scene thanks to an impressive portfolio of work including amongst others, Stanley Road, Illumination, 22 Dreams and 2013’s Sonik Kicks all hitting Number One. A significant figure in popular music for the past three generations, he remains a cultural icon.

Forest Live is an independent programme organised by the Forestry Commission bringing music to new audiences without commercial branding or sponsorship. Income from the concerts is spent on improving the woodland for both people and wildlife.

Following on from two sold out Forest Live dates last summer, Paul said of the 2014 shows, “It’s a favourite summer jaunt for me so I look forward to performing in a few of the forests that I haven’t played in a good while”.

Paul Weller plus special guests will be performing:

  • Saturday 14 June: Sherwood Pines Forest, Edwinstowe, Nr Mansfield, Notts.
  • Saturday 21 June: Bedgebury Pinetum & Forest, Nr Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
  • Friday 27 June: Dalby Forest, Nr Pickering, N Yorks.
  • Saturday 28 June: Cannock Chase Forest, Nr Rugeley, Staffs.
  • Friday 4 July: Delamere Forest, Nr Northwich, Cheshire.

Tickets £46.20 (including booking fee) go on sale at 9.00am Friday 17 January from the Forestry Commission box office tel 03000 680400 or buy online at www.forestry.gov.uk/music.

Info
www.paulweller.com
www.forestry.gov.uk/music

No trail building on 29th December

22 December, 2013 at 12:00

No Trail Building Dec 2013

We’ll be taking a break from digging over Christmas, so there will be no trail building next Sunday (29th Dec 2013).

From all of us here at Chase Trails, we’d like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year. 🙂

Jessie J concerts announced as part of Forest Live

16 December, 2013 at 13:00

The Forestry Commission are thrilled to reveal Jessie J has announced summer dates for 2014 as part of Forest Live, organised by the Forestry Commission, where concerts are performed in spectacular woodland locations around the country.

There hasn’t been a career in recent memory that has taken off so fast, so spectacularly and so all-consumingly as Jessie J’s. Highlights have included No 1 singles and two hugely successful albums that headed straight for the top with millions of sales worldwide, show-stopping performances in front of a global audience of billions at the London Olympics, a full-blown Saturday night prime-time TV career, extraordinary acts for charity that hit the headlines, Glastonbury festival and the Diamond Jubilee Concert.

With Jessie’s multi-platinum debut, ‘Who You Are’, she achieved the accolade of being the first UK solo artist to have six top-ten hits off one album including two No 1 singles: ‘Price Tag’ and ‘Domino’. Success continues with the 2013 release of her second power-pop album ‘Alive’ featuring the hit singles ‘Wild’, ‘It’s My Party’ and ‘Thunder’ alongside a sell-out UK arena tour.

Forest Live is an independent programme organised by the Forestry Commission bringing music to new audiences without commercial branding or sponsorship. Income from the concerts is spent on improving the woodland for both people and wildlife.

Commenting on the concerts, Jessie J said, “I made my Forest Live debut this summer with just one show which I loved so it’s great to be taking in another four Forest Live dates next year…………….see you there.”

Jessie J plus guest will be performing:

  • Friday 13 June: Sherwood Pines Forest, nr Edwinstowe, Notts.
  • Friday 20 June: Bedgebury Pinetum, nr Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
  • Friday 27 June: Cannock Chase Forest, nr Rugeley, Staffs.
  • Saturday 5 July: Delamere Forest, Nr Northwich, Cheshire.

Please note that the FC will no longer be selling tickets from the local forest office or Swinnerton Cycles and are only available through the box office and approved agents only.

Tickets £42.90 (including £3.90 booking fee) go on sale at 9.00am Thursday 19 December from the Forestry Commission box office tel 03000 680400 or buy online at www.forestry.gov.uk/music.

Info
www.jessiejofficial.com
www.forestry.gov.uk/music

Big Build Day on Stile Cop – 24th November 2013

18 November, 2013 at 16:00

Stile Cop Rocks

We’ll be holding another Big Build Day this weekend, on Sunday the 24th November. The cross country and downhill builders will be joining forces to work on the Red course on Stile Cop – we have a huge pile of material and an equally huge pile of rocks to shift into place, and will be making improvements to the red course, including some upgraded TTFs (technical trail features) and improving the surfacing.

We’ll also have plenty of hot food, cakes, and drinks available at lunch time for all volunteers.

If you’re interested in joining us, please read the following carefully. We’re meeting at Stile Cop at 10am, not Birches Valley like we usually do.

When: 10am until 3pm, Sunday 24th November
Where: Stile Cop – postcode WS15 1ND.

That postcode will get you to the correct road, but not the exact location – if you’re driving up Stile Cop Road from the A460 / Hednesford Road, Stile Cop will be on your RIGHT. There should be plenty of room on the fire road, but if it does happen to be full, there’s a car park nearby – if you’re driving up Stile Cop Road from the A460 / Hednesford Road, go past the gate on your right, and take the next left into the car park.

Map with directions from Birches Valley: http://goo.gl/maps/1iLTE
Street View image of the fire road entrance: http://goo.gl/maps/ctIjQ
Street View image of the car park entrance: http://goo.gl/maps/au5sJ

The gate will be open from 10am until we pack up at about 3pm. If you’ve been to Stile Cop before, please note that the turning circle at the top will not be available to use – it’ll be reserved for the Gazebo and Land Rover / trailer. Please do not block access to the gate. And finally, please make sure any valuables are hidden from view, inc sat-nav mounts, bikes, etc – the area is pretty remote and quiet.

Forthcoming Events – November/December 2013

5 November, 2013 at 19:00

A few events you may be interested in this and next month:

Thursday 14th November – Chase Trails Mid-week Maintenance
10am @ Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre, Birches Valley
For more details see the event page on Facebook.

Sunday 24th November – Stile Cop Big Build Day
10am @ Stile Cop Bike Park (see here for directions)

Thursday 28th November – Chase Trails Mid-week Maintenance
10am @ Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre, Birches Valley
For more details see the event page on Facebook.

Saturday 30th November – Christmas at Birches Valley
Christmas tree sales and Santa’s Grotto open at 10am @ Birches Valley. Santa’s Grand Arrival, along with his reindeer, will be at 11am.
For more details and opening times visit the Forestry Commission’s website.

Saturday 7th December – TrailPlus Adventure Challenge
Starting @ Tackeroo Caravan Site
Team adventure challenge event including trail running, mountain biking and kayak canoeing and special challenges.
For more details see the TrailPlus website.

Further details for Sunday’s Big Build Day

16 October, 2013 at 19:27

If you’re coming along to this Sunday’s Big Build Day, here’s some extra info about the day.

Meet:

Either meet at Birches Valley outside Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre at 10am then follow us to the build site (5 miles away) or head straight there, parking in ‘Beaudesert Old Park’ car park on Rugeley Road (WS15 1QW gets you close) then follow our signs to the build area. Unfortunately the build area is a good walk from the car park (up quite a steep hill) – approximately half a mile – click the thumbnail below for walking directions.

Beaudesert Old Car Park: https://plus.google.com/104548429352956398678/about
Driving directions from Birches Valley to Beaudesert Old Car Park: http://goo.gl/maps/c1poK

The car park is halfway between the caravan site and the golf club (on the opposite side of the road).

Aim to be at the build site for an 11am safety briefing before we start work.

Lunch:

Filled jacket potatoes and cake plus hot/cold drinks will be provided at lunchtime with a free raffle for the chance to win exclusive Chase Trails merchandise. You’re welcome to bring your own lunch and we’d probably recommend bringing some water to drink throughout the day.

Anything else?

There’s no fixed finishing time so if you can only make the morning, we don’t mind if you beat a hasty retreat after lunch.

If you’re meeting us at Birches Valley then driving to the build site, there is no need to pay for parking. If you plan to leave your car at Birches Valley all day, ask for one of our volunteer parking passes.

There will be a covered camping toilet for the ladies.

No XC Trail Building 6th October

3 October, 2013 at 12:00

Most of the Chase Trails regulars are off to Thetford Forest this weekend for the Exposure Lights Dusk ‘Til Dawn bike race. This is a 12 hour event running from 8pm on Saturday until 8am on Sunday.

As such, we’ve decided to cancel the XC trail building.

However, Stile Cop will be holding a build day to work on the Red Route, so why not head over and lend a hand there instead? They meet over at Stile Cop at 10am – click here for directions if you’re not sure where to go.

Birches Valley Car Park now closes at 7pm

1 October, 2013 at 12:00

As it’s now October, and winter is fast approaching, this means Birches Valley will now close at 7pm for the month of October.

If you usually ride in the evenings, please be sure to plan accordingly – the car park gates are shut and locked from 7pm, and you’ll be unable to get your vehicle out until the next day.

Forthcoming Events – October 2013

1 October, 2013 at 11:00

A few events you may be interested in this month:

Sunday 6th October – Chase Trails Downhill Trail Building
10am @ Stile Cop

Thursday 10th October – Chase Trails Mid-week Maintenance
10am @ Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre, Birches Valley

Saturday 19th October – Evans Ride It Mountain Bike Ride
Starting @ Tackeroo Caravan Site
The RideIt! series are organised Mountain bike and Sportive bike rides that take place twice a month all over Britain. The RideIt! series is a fantastic way to meet like minded cyclists and get out and ride in stunning surroundings.
For more details see www.evanscycles.com/ride-it

Sunday 20th October – Evans Ride It Road Sportive
Starting @ Tackeroo Caravan Site
The RideIt! series are organised Mountain bike and Sportive bike rides that take place twice a month all over Britain. The RideIt! series is a fantastic way to meet like minded cyclists and get out and ride in stunning surroundings.
For more details see www.evanscycles.com/ride-it

Sunday 20th October – Chase Trails Big Build Day
10am meeting @ Swinnerton Cycles at Birches Valley
Come and get involved in building a BRAND NEW 1km long descent on the Monkey Trail! It’s been in the making for a number of years and now we’re having a big push to get this exciting new section open as soon as possible. Please come and lend a hand at our next “Big Build Day” to help build the start of this trail. Food and drinks will be provided at lunchtime along with a raffle to win exclusive Chase Trails merchandise. Tools are provided so just come prepared for working outdoors.

Thursday 24th October – Chase Trails Mid-week Maintenance
10am @ Swinnerton Cycles Forest Centre, Birches Valley

Thursday 31st October – Forestry Commission Halloween Forest Fun
10:30am – 12:00 noon meeting @ Birches Valley Café
Halloween Forest Fun – Come and join us for our spoooooky halloween forest fun session at Birches Valley Forest Centre. Bring a pumpkin to carve, have a go at some natural crafts and brave our self led, fearsome forest trail! Come along if you dare!!! Booking essential.

One hell of a pile of rocks

25 August, 2013 at 22:00

Oh! My pry bar is twitching already…… Oh sorry, am I not supposed to say that? The latest delivery to Chase Trails. We won’t be giving a prize for selection of parking spot, but there won’t be any complaints either. So where is it going? Don’t worry yourself about that, you’ll find out in the next few weeks! As you can see from William lending his presence to give an idea of scale, these are no small stones. They come from the same origins as the rocks on the Stegosaurus, and yes, we will be getting more with the passage of time. We can find plenty of uses for nice gritstone like this.

But in the mean time…..

A skeleton crew was out on Sunday giving the Lower Cliff section some pruning. The last part of the run through the clearfell area is still to be completed from about two switchbacks from the end. You can expect Lower Cliff to be shut at some stage in the near future, for just one Sunday, whilst we repair the edge that has broken away. We’ll probably elevate the edge by about 5 foot, with a spring loaded lip, so if you get it wrong, we get some film of you going head first into that smelly pool at the foot of the hill – call it trail builder amusement! We like a good laugh occasionally….

Bruce

“Twist & Shout” now fully open

10 August, 2013 at 18:00

After our usual Saturday ride, Dave and I nipped into “Twist & Shout” to check out the condition of the new surface. Between the teenagers from the Shugborough Outdoor Education Centre and last Thursday’s mid-week building session, nearly 150 metres of trail had been resurfaced. The last few days of dry weather had done the new material a world of good so we’ve took the decision to open the section.

This now means all of our trails are fully open …. good news all round.

We’re back online…

22 July, 2013 at 06:00

I’ve been having a few computer based problems over the last couple of weeks so unfortunately our blog updates have suffered.

Recent work has included surfacing repairs and adding a drainage pipe to the ‘Bomb Hole’ berm. With the arrival of summer at long last, we’re hoping that the sump will remain dry for a good while but you never know with our weather…

Forthcoming Events – July 2013

28 June, 2013 at 12:00

A few events you may be interested in:

Sunday 7th July – Run & Ride Summer Classic MTB Race
After the success of last year’s event, the Cannock Chase Summer Classic is back for 2013. Held as before at the Tackeroo Campsite, the event will again be focused at the newbie of fun rider. Find out more here.

Wednesday 17th July – Cycleshack MTB Evening Summer Series
Starts at the Tackeroo campsite – check out their Facebook page for more details.

Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st July – Love Life Love Running – CANCELLED
Unfortunately, the LLLR team have had to cancel the event due to a lack of sponsors. Find out more here.

Wednesday 31st July – Cycleshack MTB Evening Summer Series
Another round of the series, starting at the Tackeroo campsite – check out their Facebook page for more details.