Singletrack Trail Guide – Aston Hill

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Report and pics from Neil Cain…


In 1998 a young Ian Warby approached the Forestry Commission about an awkward piece of woodland too steep to be of commercial use. With some fast learning about sustainable trails, a lot of hard graft and input from a world-class downhiller (Rob Warner helped to design the infamous Black Run), Ian converted a forestry off-cut into one of the premier mountain bike centres in the south east of England, and introduced Aston Hill into southern mountain bike folklore.

Ian moved on after nine years successfully running Aston Hill, and a local shop took on the lease. In 2008 the reins were passed over again to the hastily formed volunteer Aston Hill Committee who have since have been running and developing the centre with the Forestry Commission (FC) and, more recently, the financial, administrative and legal clout of the national cycle organisation, the CTC.

Aston Hill is now open 7 days a week with a pay-to-ride scheme operated by the CTC. All the trails are being constantly tuned, with some exciting developments in the pipeline…

To read the full thing click on –

Comments (7)

    we need more dh venues like this in the south east!
    excellent place

    1998 Really! I first raced there on the Black run at a SAMS DH event in 1997

    What can I say? Others proofed and OK’d it – I only wrote the thing. 😉

    It’s a savage place… a savage lung-busting twisty climb, followed by a seriously precarious, greasy, chalky, off-camber descent. Nice, in a kindof – if you don’t like your elbows or teeth kinda way.

    It begs the classic question – “What tyres for Aston?”. I’m going for Octopus, myself. Or should that be Octopi?

    Fantastic place- hallowed turf is that! There needs to more like it in the South East and not just DH or jumps (though more of those would be good). Bedgebury Forest is about the only other one worthy of notice, but is hardly worthy of a best in UK spot…..

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