Photos: official opening of Steven Burke Sports Hub

Pendle Olympic Gold Medallist Steven Burke MBE has officially opened his borough’s new cycle track named in his honour!

On Saturday, the highly-respected cyclist from Colne went along to the Steven Burke Sports Hub at Nelson’s Swinden Playing Fields and rode through the starting line to launch it.

Steven Burke with the Mayor and Mayoress of Pendle, Coun. Graham Roach and Joanna Sagar.

Steven Burke with the Mayor and Mayoress of Pendle, Coun. Graham Roach and Joanna Sagar.

There were hundreds of people at the hub, next to the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, near the borders of Colne and Barrowford.

After Steven opened his hub, there were a series of races watched by Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson, Mayor and Mayoress of Pendle Coun. Graham Roach and Joanna Sagar, and Pendle Council leader Coun. Joe Cooney. Tyhe Mayor even managed a circuit on his bike.

A team from Cycle Sport Pendle, who came up with the idea, also attended alongside Nelsoner Alan Ramsbottom (78), who was in the Tour de France in 1962 and 1963, finishing 16th once!

Steven said: “I’m proud. It’s a massive honour for me having such a great facility named after me! It’s a good facility. It was great for me to ride round with all the kids as well.”

And he said: “I want to thank Peter Boast and others from Cycle Sport Pendle for getting this process up and running. I’d also like to thank British Cycling, Sport England, Lancashire Environment Fund, Pendle Council and Monk of Colne Ltd for their contributions.”

Mr Ramsbottom said: “I think it’s absolutely fantastic – there was nothing like this when I was riding!”

The Mayor said: “It’s absolutely brilliant. It’s a wonderful facility. It means people can ride round in safety and children can get into riding. It’s wonderful!”

And Coun. Cooney added: “I am really pleased we have got this facility open. It’s going to be a brilliant facility for the whole of Pendle! This is just another benefit we’ve got.”