Saffron Walden: Park & Ride For Tour De France?

11 December 2013, 06:00 | Updated: 4 February 2014, 17:34

A Park and Ride Service could be set up in Saffron Walden, to cope with thousands of spectators expected to watch the Tour de France cycle race pass through the town.

After the riders head out of Cambridge, the stage of the world famous cycle race on the 7th July next year takes them through Saffron Walden and the villages of Uttlesford District.

To cope with one of the world's biggest events heading through the rural streets and leafy roads of the area, the District Council have agreed to set up a working group to oversee and support the race.

The group has also set aside £20,000 in the 2014/15 budget to help fund and support this prestigious and international event.

Councillor Howard Rolfe, Cabinet Member for Communities and Partnerships said: "We recognise this event requires a level of support which will ensure that everyone will be able to capture this fantastic elite sport on the day and come away with a lasting legacy which may inspire those to get involved with sport and activity. 

We want to make sure that it is as successful as the Olympic Torch Relay, which passed through the district in 2012.

The group will comprise relevant Members and Officers including the Chief Executive, Assistant Director Community Engagement, Emergency Planning Officer and Community Partnerships Manager.  

They will meet on an ad hoc basis to ensure the event is a success and that maximum benefit is achieved for the district.

The Tour de France cycle race will be passing through Saffron Walden, Sewards End, Radwinter, the Sampfords and Felsted.

The Tour de France organisers will be responsible for the majority of the logistics associated with this event.

The council appreciates that there will be travel disruption on 7 July, however it wants to reassure residents and businesses that plans are being developed to ensure that disruption will be kept to a minimum. 

More information on road closures and alternative routes will be made available over the coming months."

Next, the new group from Uttlesford District Council will be meeting with Essex County Council before Christmas to start to fine tuning their plans.