Muddymoles mountain biking in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

Mountain Bike Code of Conduct and the Surrey Hills AONB

Posted by DaveC | October 28, 2011 | 6 comments so far

While enjoying my favorite activity of winding the staff of Cycleworks up and then being relieved of cash, Dave Farmer mentioned he’d been to a meeting of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Mountain Bike Working Group.

“Who?” said I.

Well you can read a bit more about the Surrey Hills Mountain Biking Working Group on their website although you may well still say “Who?” after you’ve read it. Apparently they fund the little brown signs that say “Surrey Hills” on the roads…

Quite a lot a money seems to flow through this organisation and yet very few people seem to have heard of them. At least there is some sort of unified body that is looking into Mountain Biking in the Surrey Hills area and it’s a good idea to look at what they are doing.

Personally after the recent negative publicity caused by the illegal trails on Ranmore anything we can do to build bridges with other users has to be a positive thing, unless you are one of those who think MTB riders should go round in balaclavas!

Anyway, the working group also produce the Mountain Bike Code of Conduct jointly withe IMBA and the CTC. There’s nothing controversial in there as far as I can see, just good common sense which many of us can forget in the heat of the moment.


About the author

Dave's been riding seriously since about 1997 and is one of the founding Molefathers — along with Matt and Mark — that came up with the idea of a MTB website for Mole Valley riders.

He's had several different bikes but it's now mainly 29ers in Dave's stable, apart from an Orange 5.

Current Bikes: Orange 5, Salsa Spearfish and Kona Big Unit

There are 6 comments on ‘Mountain Bike Code of Conduct and the Surrey Hills AONB’

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  1. Matt says:

    I think it’s great to see local bike businesses involved in this as there definitely has to be a concerted approach to make sure mountain biking is seen in a more positive light in general and it’s best this happens from the ground up.

    DaveF’s talked about this sort of thing for a while so it’s a positive to see Head for the Hills, Cycleworks and All Biked Up currently represented.

    Agree promotion of mountain biking and themselves goes hand in hand as they need to demonstrate to all stakeholders (not just mountain bikers) how they are working to improve the mountain bike experience for all.

    Nice one.

  2. Jem says:


    Good to know there is a body that recognizes there is a need for this. I agree with all that the code of conduct states.

    What is not recommended, is the use of a public liability insurance. Although not mandatory, it’s worth it for peace of mind if you decide to collide with a child, horse, adult or rambler. You could be held responsible for the cause of an accident.

    By joining the CTC you automatically recieve their CTC liability cover (pdf), plus loads of other benefits.


    • Leshere says:

      Hi rather new to this site and really here thanks to my dear son (Nathan 15). I am a long distance walker and regular user of Surrey hills one point to note is that I appreciate the high level of courtesy shown by most MTB’ers… that thank you and the prudent application of brakes when you notice my silly dog are deeply appreciated.

      • Dandy says:

        Welcome to the site, Leshere. It’s good for us to get the views of different user groups. Like you, we’re normal folk who just want to enjoy the Surrey Hills in the way that gives us the most fun and relaxation. We appreciate that riders and walkers all have different ways of doing this.

        We always give way to horses, recognising that unlike mountain bikes they have their own minds and despite the best-efforts of the rider, they can suddenly take off in an unexpected direction (though my mtb is prone to do the same thing, at least when I’m riding it!). Quite a few of us are also dog owners, so again, we are very much aware of what they can suddenly decide to do, again despite the best efforts and intentions of the rider.

        We appreciate it when on a difficult climb a walker will stand to the side and let us pass without having to stop and lose momentum. Similarly, on a downhill path, we will slow down as we pass to avoid the danger of any high speed collisions, but if you step to the side to let us through it is appreciated.

        If we all try to enjoy what we have, and recognise that all users have a right to enjoy this magnificent countryside; and we all extend the basic courtesies and respect to each other, then any conflict between the different user groups should be kept to a minimum.

        After all, it’s a tough world for most of us out there, so let’s all try and make it a little easier for ourselves when were trying to relax at the week end.

      • Dave says:

        Hi Les, Thank you for you comment, it’s good to hear your point of view as so often positive views are drowned out by the doom and gloom.

        We are all out there to enjoy ourselves and good manners cost nothing!

  3. Related: Ramblers – what have they ever done for us?? | Muddymoles

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