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Chris Evans MP

MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT FOR ISLWYN

Off Road Biking

I have grown increasingly concerned by the behaviour of off-road bikers in Islwyn. Islwyn is lucky to have a beautiful natural habitat including areas such as Cwmcarn Forest drive, Gwyddon Forestry, and Mynydd Machen.

In my time as MP for Islwyn, each year this problem increases. At the moment these bikes are being used on public land and tearing up our beautiful landscape. I have also had numerous reports of threatening behaviour by these bikers when they are challenged. This is completely unacceptable; all residents should feel safe and able to enjoy the nature Islwyn has to offer.

As a Member of Parliament, I have liaised with the police and the council to tackle this issue locally and as a member of the off-road biking task force. I have met with residents to discuss their experiences. Many constituents have raised concerns about the impact of off-road biking in these areas, both on our landscape and on residents. This is a huge problem right across the countryside, across the South Wales valleys, the North of England, anywhere there are mountains or large areas of countryside. It has become clear that the police simply do not have the powers to tackle these destructive illegal off-road bikers as things stand. In 2021 I will present residents’ petitions on off-road biking to parliament.

I am also working to be able to present a ten-minute rule bill to give the police more powers to tackle this matter. There needs to be stricter legislation. At the moment scramblers do not even need a registration plate. We need to make it more difficult to own these vehicles and they have got to be registered and insured. Every sale of an off-road bike should have to be
registered.

I think it will win a huge amount of support, not just from Islwyn. This is a national issue and impacts any MP with the countryside in their constituency.