Disclaimer: Some of these facts are not quite as serious as others!
Q: I want to get involved, who should I talk to?
A: Brilliant! If it’s about a particular site try the forum or respective Head of Trail Design (grandiose title, not so grand job) if not try the select group daft enough to take on a semi-formal role in the organisation (Secretary , Chairman or Treasurer). We’ll do our best to answer any questions you may have. Contact us
Q: Do I have to be a member to attend the dig days / ride the trails?
A: Forestry Commission (the land manager for several of the sites where we build e.g. Stainburn, Dalby, Wharncliffe) require third party insurance to be in place for our dig days. This means if a member of the public or another rider / forest user is injured directly as a result of our work then there is an insurance policy they can claim against (NB: it doesn’t cover a volunteer hurting themselves, be a grown up, act with care ). This insurance only applies to club members, so, strictly speaking, yes. However, we realise people often want to see what a dig is all about so make people welcome on a first time/trial basis. We’d be ever so grateful if you’d join if you come again (and yes, we realise the irony of paying to come and graft, but hardcore and tools don’t buy themselves ). The trails are free to use and open access for all. Some sites charge for parking or have shops with expensive cake though …. Being a member also entitles you to all the lovely Discount benefits (Our Sponsor Page Clicky), to enter the members only competitions and giveaways. Plus, members doing the required number of digs will also be entitled to significant discounts from certain big trade brands (details TBC).
Q: How old do I have to be to attend a dig day?
A: The problem we have if you are under 18 is one of insurance. If your dad/parent/whatever is willing to join and dig with you then you can go down the family membership route. Membership will cost £15 for per adult and £7 for you as an additional family member. See Joining SingletrAction
Q: I want to blaze in, tell you what you’ve built is sh1te, is too hard / too easy / doesn’t flow, isn’t what I want to ride, should have been like this or that etc?
A: Think a little before doing so, please. Remember some people spend an awful lot of their own free time working on trails in all sort of ways (it’s not just shovels, barrows, rocks and dirt). All this effort can give people a pronounced sense of “ownership” that makes them prickly when criticised off the cuff. There might also be a lot of other “things” to do with why things are they way they are. Sometimes it’s better to ask about things first.
Q: I’m going riding at Stainburn, should I wear body armour?
A: If you want to. They’re your bits of body, you wrap them up in whatever you like. Obviously its personal preference i wear knee pads on every ride, some folks look like Stormtroopers and some just wear a helmet.
Q: Where is Stainburn?
A: It’s here (click)
Q: Why isn’t there/why can’t you build a DH course at Stainburn?
A: As usual its complicated, please look at this thread for an answer.
Q: I’m going to Dalby. Do I need to pay to park?
A: No, but there is toll charge for using the Forest Road through Dalby, it was about £7.00 last time I went. Join SingletrAction and attend 2 of our dig days (at any site or combination of) and receive your own Free, yes Free, annual pass!
Q: What facilities are there at Stainburn.
A: None. Take a flask and make sure you go to the toilet before you leave home.
Q: Will I see Steve Peat at Wharncliffe.
Q: Are the trails MTB only?
A: No, not on Forestry Commission managed sites. FC operate a policy of open access to all (permitted) users. In a typical woodland this will include walkers (their dogs), horses and riders. Public rights of way may exist but that’s another issue. In our opinion ride sensibly bearing in mind there might be something round the corner, if you can’t stop, it’s generally your fault. Walkers shouting at you and telling you to get off the footpath (when one of the trails our volunteers have built) are taking the Michael. In our opinion better to smile, explain why they’re wrong and be on your way. Life’s too short for too much aggro’.
Q: Who are Forestry Commission (Forestry Enterprise) and whats the difference?
A: Always a tricky one, not just for us but also when you ask people at FE / FC, however: Quote ‘We [Forestry Commission] are the Government Department responsible for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woodland and increasing their value to society and the environment‘ FE (England) is an agency of the Forestry Commission. It manages the public forest estate. FE operates externally under the FC name (they used FE externally for a while in the 90’s but this changed after devolution around 2002). FC is still a GB organisation (England, Scotland & Wales) but is funded and reports directly to the Scottish Government in Scotland, the Welsh Assembly in Wales and DEFRA in England. Scotland also has an FE agency but Wales does not as the Welsh Assembly abolished most agencies a few years ago and absorbed the agency back int FC http://www.forestry.gov.uk/ There you go, clear as mud. To be honest, call them whatever they call themselves. We find FC and FE pretty interchangeable terms.
Q: What sort of bike do I need?
A: Any, like Lance said, it’s not about the bike!
Q: What are your plans for [Dalby, Guisborough, Stainburn, Wharncliffe ….]
A: See the [relevant] project pages
Q: Is it true me and my mates shouldn’t build our own stuff at Stainburn?
A: Despite your enthusiasm the building of non-approved trails and features jeopardises the future of Stainburn as the FE have to come along and remove it. So please stick to the officially built stuff and if you want to influence the features that we’re building come along to a dig day.
Q: Respecting ongoing trailbuilding work and recently constructed trail.
A: If a trail is blocked off (tape, logs placed over it, signs or similar) PLEASE respect the closure. Often there are good reasons although they might not be immediately clear. Sometimes FE are felling trees. The operations are noisy and confusing, especially for the operators. Give them space and respect exclusions. In the cases of recently built trails (usually taped off or with logs / branches placed over the trail) PLEASE respect this restriction as well. Trail construction is relatively simple and straightforward but freshly built trails tend to be delicate and vulnerable to erosion. A trail takes time to “bed in” (the process of hardening as the trail and materials absorb/lose water and bind together). Pump tracks are a particular example. Usually made out of dirt they take time, gentle and even compaction plus repeated watering (i.e. rain) to harden up. If you respect that process (by staying off at first) the trail will last much better and longer, honest. We all know it’s frustrating to make a trip and find stuff taped off, and we’ve all justified it to ourselves that it’s “just us” or that we “know better”. Please respect closures, it’s for the best for everybody in the long run. We hope this answers some of the common questions. Feel free to ask in the forum or study the various bits of information on the site. Alternatively email the Secretary: Dave , Chairman: Tim or Treasurer Libby . If there’s a question and/or answer you think should be added please email firstname.lastname@example.org