Cycling Ulster statement regarding the disbanding of the BMX commission.

The BMX Commission is a commission of Cycling Ulster with a Terms of Reference, which has recently been updated, under which it carries out the function of developing BMX within Ulster.  The commission is made up of eight elected officers, with 4 each from Belfast City BMX Club and Lisburn BMX Club, along with a representative from the Executive.  In November 2023 it had been agreed that the 2 clubs would rotate the roles of Chairperson and Secretary.  This rotation had commenced in 2024 with Belfast club filling the Chair and Lisburn club filling the Secretary position.

The members of Belfast Club resigned in early March.  This left only the Lisburn members as part of the commission along with the executive rep.  At the May meeting of the Cycling Ulster Executive the issue regarding the CU BMX commission was discussed.  The BMX Rep informed the executive that the commission secretary had resigned.  This left the commission with no senior officers, as the chair and treasurer had also resigned earlier in the year.  The executive rep had been appointed interim chair until a replacement could be found.

The executive took the decision that the commission could no longer function as intended, or in line with its Terms of Reference, and the best course of action was to disband the commission with immediate effect.  The executive rep communicated this to the remaining members of the commission earlier this week.  This decision was not taken lightly and was made as a last resort, as, despite requests for new members, no one came forward.  If anyone does come forward, the executive will be delighted to re-activate the commission in line with its Terms of Reference.

BMX is a cornerstone of providing access for kids to come into the sport of cycling, as it is off road, safe and easily accessible.  The numbers in attendance at events was growing in recent years and the great work at grassroots level was evident in both clubs.

Cycling Ulster has funding available to assist in the development of activities across all disciplines within Ulster.
Some examples of this for BMX in 2023 were

  • funding spaces for 4 BMX level 1 coaches in Ulster Clubs
  • a subsidised trip to Knightswood BMX, the Worlds track, giving Ulster riders access to the track for over 6 hours
  • a successful Ulster BMX Championships with 60 riders taking part in September
  • a subsidised trip for all riders at the end of the year to Belfast Activity Centre, which was very much appreciated by all the kids who attended.

This funding, along with funding to run beginners and female only events will still be available in 2024.  Both clubs have been informed how to apply for the funding.

The Cycling Ulster executive are hopeful the clubs will step up again and the commission will be re-activated.  The executive are also working hard behind the scenes to achieve this goal, and are happy to meet and engage with anyone who wants to come forward and discuss the issue.  As with any issue, the resolution comes from positive engagement, dialogue, and compromise.  The most important people in all of this are the children and how we provide the facilities and resources for them to take part and enjoy BMX.

Queries can be emailed to secretary.ulster@cyclingireland.ie