The new Olympic course at Hadleigh Farm promises more than enough to challenge the best riders in the world.
Designers have been busy sculpting this rather scenic spot into a series of stock-strewn paths, steep, technical descents littered with tree roots – and even a tunnel.
Essex is quite blessed when it comes to off-road trails, with Epping and Hainault Forests, The Fitch Way, Langdon Falls and Thorndon Park already well established with riders around the UK.
Best of all, they’re all linked by a network of bridleways, so if you’re feeling keen, you could set out on your own off-road ‘Tour d’Essex’.
Back at Hadleigh Farm meanwhile, there are plenty of reasons to visit, and they don’t all involve biking. As you might have guessed from the name, there’s a rare breeds farm here where youngsters can meet the resident goats, sheep, rabbits and pigs – as well as tackling the tricky willow maze and other activities.
Then of course there’s the nearby ruins of the 13th-century castle, where you can look out across the Essex marshes. Why not jump on your bike and see what it’s all about?
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