Preparations are well underway to welcome Tour of Britain cyclists to Cheshire East for Stage Three of the prestigious event – with a whole host of activities planned for spectators to enjoy.
The largest free to attend sporting event begins in Glasgow on September 4 and concludes in London on September 11, with 10 of the Union Cycliste Internationale’s (UCI) top level world tour teams among the 20 teams competing this year – including Tour de France winners, Team Sky.
Comprising eight stages in total, the race heads to Cheshire for Stage Three on Tuesday, September 6, and will see riders cycling just over 111 miles between Congleton and Tatton Park in Knutsford, setting off at 11am and finishing at around 3.30pm. It is the only stage that is being held completely within one county.
To minimise disruption across Cheshire East, all roads on the route will be closed using a rolling road block for around 40 minutes – both 20 minutes before and after the cyclists are expected to pass through each town. Spectators are urged to arrive in plenty of time to avoid the road closures.
Those thinking of attending the start of the race in Congleton need to be aware that Market Street, High Street/Lawton Street and one side of Mountbatten Way will be closed from 4.30am.
Across the Borough, towns being visited by the route have been busy organising events and activities to give the Tour the welcome it deserves.
Congleton – a three-day beer festival at Capitol Walk
Alsager – choir and dance performances, a community sprint challenge using static exercise bikes, balloon artists and circus performers and an exhibition of Penny Farthing’s and other old bikes
Sandbach – ‘juice bikes’ and refreshments and a cycle safety day at Sandbach Fire Station
Crewe and Nantwich – displays of decorated bikes
Holmes Chapel- a ‘Fanzone’ boasting charity stalls, face painters, cycling challenges and entertainment, music from Dane Sound Radio and large screens showing the race live
Knutsford – decorated bike trail, stalls, free pop-up festival, cycle village, cyclefest, street food and bars showcasing the town’s culinary offerings, a children’s and retailers’ village, heritage village, a VIP marquee lounge, big screens showing the race live, and entertainment from Silk FM.
Tatton Park – big screens showing the race live, music, dance, street art, installations, interactive children’s activities, the chance to see the tour pass through twice, and access to the usual attractions, plus free parking
Macclesfield – In Bollington the route will be adorned with 60 large cut out bikes and 60 smaller ones will feature in shop and business, which have also been creating themed displays in preparation for the race. Capesthorne Hall will be opened up especially for the Tour, allowing spectators to watch the cyclists as they pass the end of the driveway on the A34. Parking will be available to all visitors for a charge of £5, which grants access to the gardens and tea rooms. At The Cat and Fiddle, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service will be setting up a gazebo and taking along a fire bike.
For more details about Stage 3 of the Tour of Britain, including an interactive map detailing the route and information about events going on in your local area, visit cheshiretourofbritain.co.uk.
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