Community artwork cements lasting legacy of Tour of Britain 2016 in Sidmouth
- Credit: Archant
Spectators of all ages contributed to mosaic that captures excitement of race day
A community art project has cemented a lasting legacy of the role Sidmouth played in hosting the Tour of Britain this year.
Spectators of all ages contributed to an ‘iconic’ mural depicting the excitement of race day. It has now been mounted in the Three Cornered Plot as a permanent reminder of the event.
Former professional rider and British champion Colin Lewis attended the official unveiling on Wednesday, along with representatives from East Devon District Council (EDDC), which commissioned the piece.
Mr Lewis, a two-time British National Road Race Champion and former Olympian, said Sidmouth had really set a precedent in creating the memento.
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Now president of Mid Devon Cycling Club, he revealed that not only did he compete in the Tour of Britain twice, but also completed the Devon stage with around 90 other riders the week after the race took place in September.
Devon-based artists Jess Carvill and Lucy Rockliffe, from community art project ArtStorm created a design for the ceramic mosaic and asked the public to contribute tiles when Sidmouth hosted the start of the Tour of Britain’s Devon stage.
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EDDC chairman Councillor Stuart Hughes, said: “The idea of producing a cycling scene mosaic as a permanent reminder of the Sidmouth start of the Tour of Britain, using pieces donated by spectators, is brilliant.
“Sidmouth and the Sid Valley could well be seen as the jewel in the crown for cycling.”
He added that hosting the tour presented a golden opportunity to promote the town as a tourist destination for cyclists and he hopes this will continue to gather momentum.
Cllr Hughes is encouraging people to visit Sidmouth on their bikes and take a photo by the mosaic to spread the word via social media.
The authority’s portfolio holder for the environment, Councillor Iain Chubb, said: “This is a wonderful piece of community art that captures perfectly the excitement of the Tour of Britain. It will be a lasting reminder of this popular event, which has also provided the motivation for getting people out cycling. The mosaic enhances this beautiful little green spot in Sidmouth perfectly.”
EDDC’s parks and open spaces improvement officer Jane Nichols said the artwork not only enhances the wall within the Three Cornered Plot, but was also a great way to get the whole community involved in the excitement of the tour.