Covid nightmare sees Peebles-based group cancel all 2020 cycling events

Peebles-based outdoor events company Hillside Outside Ltd has cancelled its entire programme of events for 2020, effectively moving it to 2021.

Thursday, 9th July 2020, 4:44 pm
Updated Thursday, 9th July 2020, 4:47 pm
A stunning hillside view from last year's Tour O The Borders event (Pic by Ian Linton)

Cancelled events include all TweedLove bike events, Tour O The Borders powered by Pirelli road cycling sportive and The Tweed Valley Tunnel Trail Run, with new dates in 2021 announced for all.

Despite recent reductions in lockdown measures, the business cannot salvage anything from this year.

“Covid’s having a devastating but simple impact on us – we’ve lost an entire year’s trading income,” said company founder Neil Dalgleish.

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“It’s even harder to make the decision to cancel when many aspects of life are perhaps returning to normal, but we’ve held out in hope for as long as we can. There’s far too much uncertainty and so many reasons why we can’t go ahead this year.

“We’re waiting for guidance on participant number restrictions, social distancing, regulation of toilets and catering, local authority permissions and rules, Forestry permissions and rules, travel advice, accommodation-provider availability and so much more.”

Even if the events could take place, bringing thousands of people to the Tweed Valley over the next few months would bring other issues too.

Neil said: “Our events attract thousands of people here every year, mostly from all over the UK and quite a few from abroad.

“There would undoubtedly be commercial benefit for a lot of businesses in going ahead, but we believe it’s still way too soon.

“Our infection numbers in the Borders and in Scotland are going down, so we need to consolidate that shift – not risk reversing it.

“But telling people not to come here is the exact opposite of what we’ve been doing for the last ten years, so it’s disheartening to say the least.”

Current event customers to hold onto their places to attend next year’s events, but vouchers or refunds will also be possible.

Full details of new dates and refunds are available at www.tweedlove.com, www.tourotheborders.com and www.tunneltrailrun.com

All 2021 events will be on sale from Friday, July 24.