Scores of people get on their bikes in the Afan Valley for a special open day
SCORES of cyclists had a wheelie good time at an open day to promote a newly-created Afan Valley trail.
Organised by Cognation, the event aimed to promote the new bike trails on offer near Bryn Betws Lodge, Gyfylchi, at Afan Forest Park.
It saw hundreds of people flock to the Afan Valley attraction, who were given the opportunity to try out some of the Cognation trails and were able to take part in seminars on bike maintenance.
Cognation mtb trails South Wales was founded in 2010 and is investing in mountain biking across South Wales.
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Cognation project manager Lisa Jenkins said the bike trail actually opened in December.
"But this is like the opening event for it to get it promoted in the area," she said.
"I am really pleased with the turnout and its great to see just how popular this bike trail has become.
"We had a mixture of people attend, from the more experienced mountain bikers to people from the local community who wanted to see what it was all about.
"We probably had a couple of hundred of people here on Saturday, and everyone enjoyed themselves.
"We also had a lot of bike shops which had some stands."
She added: "We are currently half way through a £4.3 million funded project and looking forward to completing the second bike trail in the Afan Forest."
Richard Berry, from Tircoed, attended the event with his son Harry, 3.
Mr Berry designed and built a mountain bike side car chassis from scrap metal found at his local dump.
When asked why he designed it, he said: "When I took my son out on the rear of my mountain bike I found it became unstable, especially if we went off-road.
"So I did some welding and made a side car seat for him so he can enjoy the off road experience as much as I do."
Visitors from far and wide also came to the open day.
Oliver Wright, from Cheltenham, said he was a regular visitor to the park.
"There are lots of bike trails like this in England, but what makes this area special is the scenery," said the 30-year-old.
"I have driven down today with nine friends to try out the new facilities here."
Crispin Cooper also sang the praises of the beauty spot.
"The bike park is brilliant and it's about time facilities like this were available," he said.
"It is the next step in where mountain biking is developing and what I particularly like here are the short trails with lots of jumps."
Cognation is part-funded by the EU's Convergence European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, with match funding coming from the Welsh Government and partner organisations.