Great plans afoot as Ottery St Mary gears up for Tour of Britain

Bradley Wiggins leads the field away at the start of last year's Devon stage of the Tour of Britain

Bradley Wiggins leads the field away at the start of last year's Devon stage of the Tour of Britain in Sidmouth.. Picture by Alex Walton. - Credit: Archant

WorldTour teams will be racing through as town plays host to world famous race for first time

A big breakfast, bespoke bicycles, competitions and a giant ‘art attack’ are on the cards as Ottery gears up to welcome the Tour of Britain.

WorldTour teams, which could include cyclists Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish MBE, are set to race through the town on Friday, September 9, as - for the first time - it plays host to the world famous contest.

Ottery’s community is expected to turn out in force to witness the biggest spectator event in the country and there will be plenty of opportunity for everyone to get involved in a host of activities planned to mark the occasion.

Organisers of the Food and Families Festival are planning a big breakfast and hope to involve eateries in the town and offer ‘food for all’ as a filling pre-race start.

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With the attention of the global media on the town, a variety of unique features are being prepared, and there are plans to create giant art to be viewed from the air.

Red, white and blue bikes featuring special ‘Ottery artefacts’ such as tar barrels and otters will welcome riders into the town, while businesses will take part in a Tour of Britain-themed window decorating competition.

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Volunteers and representatives from different organisations met on Tuesday to brainstorm ideas and Keith Spittlehouse, of the Otter Valley Rotary Club, set out plans to organise a ‘VIP’ viewing platform.

Speaking at the meeting, Mayor Glyn Dobson said the race presents a perfect opportunity to showcase the town to the rest of the world.

He hopes to organise an event to attract more cyclists prior to the big day with talk of involving Chineway Hill – labelled ‘King of the Mountains’ by organisers.

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