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Bikers in campaign to re-open Cullingworth track
Bikers’ attempts to turn a former quarry into an officially recognised off-road motorcycle track have taken to Facebook, with more than 1,300 people backing the idea.
Flappit Quarry, off Halifax Road, near Cullingworth, had been used by bikers and off-road riders for years. But following the death of dad Mark Clifford in a quad bike accident at the site in 2007, Bradford Council has kept it closed amid safety and noise concerns. With a limited number of tracks for off-road riders in the district, many argue the council should reopen it to provide what they see as a much-needed facility.
The man behind the latest push thinks if Bradford Council got involved, it could make Flappit a safe facility for the community and even a source of revenue for the local authority.
Queensbury biker Ryan Harrison started a Facebook group called ‘Reopen the Flappits Quarry’. So far, 1,380 users have ‘liked’ the page, with many writing messages of support. Mr Harrison said: “I feel it’s important the quarry is reopened because it would be a secure environment for people to go and have fun legally, causing no bother.
“I think the quarry itself needs work, like fencing off, a suitable car park and maybe sensible planning for tracks so there’s no crashing.
“It would be great and would stop many people from riding illegally on the road and annoying many people.
“I’m sure it would even be good for the police – they wouldn’t have to waste time chasing bikers on the road. The site itself is out of the way and would make money for the council, which I’m sure it would be interested in. In mine and many others’ opinion, it wouldn’t bother anyone if there was a fee to pay and a legal insurance form to fill in.”
Mr Harrison is currently in contact with other bike enthusiasts to decide how to move forward with the request.
One of the group’s followers, Nicola Ayrton, said: “Crazy that they won’t allow a contained, monitored space for people to go and practise and learn – instead they push people out to ride illegally in some cases. Madness.”
A number of riders have flouted the ban in recent years, leading police to issue warnings to anyone found riding on or near the site.
A Bradford Council spokesman said it currently had no plans to lift the ban, adding: “This quarry is part of an area of registered common land. The council has not been talking to anyone about a possible trials venue here.
“It is an offence to drive any sort of vehicle, including motorbikes, on common land like this without any lawful authority. The council is not happy if anyone does so, but this is privately owned land so it is up to the owner and, if necessary, the police, to enforce this.”