Suffolk/Essex: Region geared up for a super summer of sport
14:46 31 January 2014
Sports enthusiasts in Suffolk and Essex are set for a bumper summer of watching and cheering on a host of events.
Further details have now emerged of the Women’s Tour of Britain cycle race, which is due to go through the region. The final leg finishes on Angel Hill, in Bury St Edmunds, on May 11, after starting off from Harwich. Felixstowe and Clacton are also hosting an earlier stage of the event on May 9.
It is being linked with the Tour de Suffolk community cycle ride, which takes place on July 27 and is also being hosted by Bury St Edmunds.
The two events are sandwiched in between the Commonwealth Games baton coming to Suffolk on June 9, with Bury hosting a Super 8s athletics competition and Ipswich a huge rally at Christchurch Park.
It is anticipated that reigning Olympic and World Championship medal holders will participate in the top cycle race and although the line-up is yet to be announced it is likely to attract stars such as Lizzie Armitstead, Laura Trott, Dani King and Helen Wyman.
There will be TV coverage and lots of media and public interest is anticipated. Community-related events will also take place and thousands of people are anticipated to visit. Organisers of the race met up with business leaders at the Angel Hotel in Bury, where Guy Elliott, director of event organiser SweetSpot, said: “Britain is tops for global cycling and we want to promote girls’ and womens’ sport.
“Suffolk is one of the counties supporting this event and we want to show Bury at its best and ram the town centre, making it a festival.”
The first stage begins in Northamptonshire and travels through Hertfordshire and Essex before coming to Suffolk.
Mark Cordell, the chief executive of ourburystedmunds – the business improvement district (BID) for the town centre, said: “It’s great news that so many major sporting events are coming to Bury this year building upon the momentum of the Tour of Britain in 2011 and the Olympic torch in 2012.
“These events reflect positively upon the town and how it is viewed by others. The increased footfall in town on these days will provide opportunities for BID businesses.”
The Tour de Suffolk event is on the final day of the Tour de France and is two years since the opening ceremony of the London Olympics.
There are plans for community cycle events of differing lengths to start and finish in the Buttermarket in Bury and for large TV screens to be in place to show the finish of the Tour de France.