Trail blazing project set to benefit mountain biking across Europe

Innovative project will see partners come together to develop trail building guidelines and more

Date posted

30 September 2019


A ‘trail blazing’ project has been given significant funding as its plans to standardise the building of mountain bike trails across Europe continue to gather pace.

DIRTT – Developing Inter-European Trail Builder Training – consists of a number of partner organisations including Edinburgh Napier and aims to develop an educational framework and professional training programme for mountain bike trail builders.Volunteers working on a Mountain Bike trail

The three year project has been granted €387,731 through the European Union’s ERASMUS+ programme and will be co-ordinated by Fagskolen Tinius Olsen, a college of higher vocational education in Norway.

The training will look at a number of areas within the trail building process, including planning, design, construction, and maintenance and management stages.

Partners in the project – which have been brought together through the European branch of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA Europe) include:

  • Fagskolen Tinius Olsen - Norway
  • International Mountain Bike Association Europe – Netherlands
  • Scottish Cyclists Union – Scotland
  • Edinburgh Napier University - Scotland
  • BikePlan - Switzerland
  • Danske Gymnastik og Idreaetsforeninger - Denmark
  • Município de Águeda - Portugal
  • Opplysningskontoret for Terrengsykling - Norway

Edinburgh Napier’s Dr Tom Campbell said: “I am hugely excited that Edinburgh Napier University is involved in this ambitious and innovative project. DIRTT will not only deliver significant benefits to the existing mountain biking community across Europe but should also promote continued growth of the sport through the provision of quality, sustainable bike trails.”

Thomas Larsen Schmidt, President of the Board at IMBA Europe, said: “The DIRTT project is an important undertaking for the mountain biking community, and we are very happy that we received the funding and can go on with it. We have identified the need for a certification regime for the trail building profession, the DIRTT project will allow us to create a solid base for future development in this sector.”

Images courtesy of IMBA Europe.