An outdoor facility for everyone
Rowing, Canoeing, Triathlon, Cycling, BMX, Equestrianism, Angling, enjoying the outdoors...
Cambridge Sport Lakes will be one of the country’s largest purpose-built sports facilities and competition venues for rowing, boating, triathlon, BMX, cycling and canoeing. The lakes will offer all athletes the chance to fulfill their sporting aspirations, from novice to international and from junior to veteran, regardless of background, gender, income or beliefs. The lakes will provide first class training and coaching opportunities for everyone and be an ideal base for a Centre of Excellence for Outdoor Activities. A Centre of Excellence for those with special needs will be created at the lakes, in conjunction with the Amateur Rowing Association’s Adaptive Rowing Development programme and the College of West Anglia’s involvement in the Riders Disabled Association, for example.
The wooded parkland surrounding the three lakes and cycling circuit offers numerous opportunities for outdoor recreation such as walking and bike-riding. Cambridge Sport Lakes is intended to be a community campus: a location where corporations, educational establishments, residents and visitors to the region are drawn together to engage in educational activities under the umbrella of sport.
“What our sport needs next is a rowing lake for Cambridge” - Sir Steve Redgrave.
Within the 220-acres of Cambridge Sport Lakes will be two linked lakes connecting to the River Cam and specifically designed for rowing training and competition.
- A total of 3.2 km of wash-free multi-lane water, which includes a 2km, 8-lane international standard competition course and a 1km, 4-lane training lake.
- An additional stretch of sheltered and easily supervised water suitable for teaching novices.
- Waterside coach paths.
- Shelving banks dissipating wash.
- Aerodynamically-designed landscaping to minimise windspeed on the lakes; competition course orientated with the prevailing wind.
- Indoor rowing and sculling tanks and large boat storage area.
- Centrally located changing facilities, classroom, seminar, conference rooms, gym, weights and ergometer facilities.
- Crew accommodation for training camps
- Ample car parking with grandstand viewing.
Improving Training and Competition.
The Lakes will improve the number and quality of training and competition opportunities available to rowers throughout the region.
- A centre of excellence will be developed at the Lakes serving Cambridgeshire and the eastern region.
- Professional instruction will be made accessible to all through community outreach and sports development programmes.
- The competition course will be optimally designed for safety and excellence including:
- Lanes 12.5m wide
- An off-course boat launching area
- 1000m x 4 lanes above the start for warm-up and training runs
- 320m x 4 lanes beyond the finish for warm-down
- air wind conditions maximised across racing lanes and a sheltered start area
The Lakes provides an attractive venue for canoeists for sprint training and racing due to its 3.2 km long stretch of wash-free multi-lane water. Cambridge Sport Lakes will offer paddlers the rare opportunity to train over measured distances in marked lanes. The flat water of the Lakes will be suitable for both kayaking and high-kneeling canoeing.
Cambridge Sport Lakes will play a vital role in helping to advance the Olympic discipline of sprint racing throughout the Eastern Region and the UK.
- A competition course 2000m long and over 100m wide suitable for Championship races and orientated with the prevailing wind
- Water 3-3.5m deep along the entirety of the competition course
- A training lake 1000m long and around 40m wide
- Shelving banks dissipating wash
- Aerodynamically-designed landscaping to minimise windspeed on the lakes
- A sheltered start area
- Waterside coach paths
- Centrally located changing facilities, classroom/ seminar room & gym
- Crew accommodation for training camps
- Ample car parking with grandstand viewing
Cambridge Sport Lakes will be an exceptional training and competition base for triathlon clubs. It will provide a safe and appealing setting for all three elements of triathlon and is suitable for hosting all levels of competition as well as day-to-day training.
- An open water venue suitable for swim-bike training
- Easy exit from the water
- Secure transition areas
- Landscaped running and cycling tracks featuring hills of varying steepness and wide finishing straights
- Centrally located changing facilities, classroom/ seminar room & gym and ample car parking
Triathletes will also benefit from unique purpose-built cycling facilities (see cycling). The Lakes will increase racing opportunities for triathletes of all ages and abilities. Juniors and amateurs will be able to train and compete alongside the International Elite. The Lakes will be the base for the Triathlon Centre of Excellence in the region.
Cambridge Sport Lakes aims to promote cycling as a facility-based sport, allowing young people the chance to train in safety in a picturesque, traffic-free environment. The highlight of Cambridge Sport Lakes for cyclists will be a 3-mile long closed cycle circuit of at least 4m in width and built to international competition standards. The circuit will feature hills varying in steepness and wide finishing straights for hotly contested finishes.
This unique purpose-built circuit will offer new opportunities for athletes in the Cambridge region and beyond.
Competition Opportunities Include:
- Off-road time trials & bunch training.
- Frequent racing for all ages and abilities.
- International standard competitions.
- Mass participation races.
- Ample car parking with grandstand viewing.
Centrally located changing facilities with classroom/seminar room & gym together with access to nearby roads for extended training make Cambridge Sport Lakes an ideal home for cycling clubs.
A combined competition and training BMX track will create fabulous new opportunities for riders in Cambridge. Cambridge currently has no facilities for BMX even though the sport is enjoyed by a huge number of young people. The purpose-built track will allow more people to participate in intense skillful racing on a state-of-the-art course full of corners, jumps and berms. Building this track will encourage the formation of a Cambridge BMX Club and promote BMX racing in the area.
BMX racing began in the early 1980s and is now an Olympic sport. The Cambridge Sport Lakes’ track will be designed for fast and furious action and built to international competition standards. A mechanical start gate track will release 8 riders at once to power down the first short downhill towards a series of jumps and berms. The track, together with camping, caravanning and central changing facilities will make Cambridge Sport Lakes the ideal venue for regional, national and international competitions.
In partnership with the College of West Anglia, Cambridge Sport Lakes will offer a wide-range of equestrian facilities and educational opportunities to the community.
- A 2 km long cantering track with cross-country jumps will be created adding an extra dimension to Cambridge Sport Lakes
- A new American barn together with an extended arena at the College of West Anglia’s Milton Campus
- First-class teaching facilities will enable students of all ages and abilities to enjoy a ‘hands-on’ teaching experience
- Community groups such as Cambs Riders Disabled Association, local Pony Clubs and junior show jumping groups will have greater access to purpose-built facilities
These new and improved facilities will allow increased participant numbers and greater flexibility of use. Riders from all over the region will benefit from the chance to develop old and new skills in a safe and controlled environment. The Cambridge Sport Lakes and College of West Anglia partnership will enable the establishment of an Equestrian Centre of Excellence.
Cambridge Sport Lakes will include a very large lake stocked with fish specifically for angling and maintaining water quality. This lake, the Storage Lake, is in addition to the competition and training lakes designed for rowing and canoeing. It will have a more natural bank profile and a depth dependent on conditions of between 1.5 and 11m.
The Storage Lake will be stocked to a high density with fish of similar species to the neighbouring River Cam, e.g. roach, tench, chub and bream. It will be available for matches and tournaments. Anglers will also benefit from the lakeside towpaths, ample car parking and the managed bank habitat of Cambridge Sport Lakes.
Cambridge Sport Lakes will be a paradise for anyone who enjoys the outdoors.
A network of cycle paths will connect Cambridge Sport Lakes to Milton Country Park, the Villages of Milton and Waterbeach, and the River Cam towpath, creating off-road links to Cambridge.
The 100 acres of wooded parkland will provide wildlife habitat for creatures native to East Anglia and offers the opportunity for creating educational nature trails.