Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

North Devon welcomes Tour of Britain in penultimate stage

PUBLISHED: 12:59 17 September 2012

Tour of Britain 2012 Barnstaple

Tour of Britain 2012 Barnstaple

Archant

Crowds were ‘equal to Tour de France’ says race director, as Stage Seven kicked off in Barnstaple.

BARNSTAPLE was buzzing on Saturday morning as crowds gathered to send off the Tour of Britain as it started its seventh stage through Devon.

Race Director Mick Bennett said the Devon stage was the best the Tour has ever had.

He said: “That was the best atmosphere I’ve experienced at a stage in the nine years we’ve been running The Tour of Britain and it was equal to that of The Tour de France.

“To see crowds of such big proportions was unbelievable.”

The crowds tooted horns and waved Devon flags as the riders, including World Champion Mark Cavendish and overall winner of the Tour, Devon rider Jon Tiernan-Locke.

Due to a stomach bug, Tour de France winner and Olympic gold medallist Bradley Wiggins was absent from this stage of the race.

But local councillor Ricky Knight made up for the lack of sideburns with his own pair as he led out the race with the Royal Marines and 30 young Bikeability riders on a Victorian three-wheeler.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council cabinet member for highways and transportation, said the day was fantastic.

“The crowd, the weather and the scenery have all been incredible,” he said.

“It was great to see so many people along the route, probably the biggest crowds we have ever had.

“Local businesses must have benefited from that and I would have thought that it has brought in more than £3 million generated by last year’s stage.

“A live worldwide TV audience has also seen what makes Devon so special, it has really shown the county at its best as the premier destination for cycling.”

Check out our photo galleries for more pictures from the weekend.

0 comments

Other News Stories

16:00

Film produced to showcase North Devon becomes huge online hit.

Read more

Our reporters took on the challenge to see who could demolish the monstrous Easter-inspired freakshake at Tooters in Barnstaple first - watch and find out who won here.

Read more
13:38

Ilfracombe’s latest nightspot opens its doors this Friday night – will you try the Flying V?

Read more

Channel 4 programme My Kitchen Rules is looking for couples in North Devon who want to showcase their culinary skills to win £10,000.

Read more

Ilfracombe’s harbour master says the work, which started in November, have provided an exceptional new viewing area for the statue

Read more

The deadline for voting in the elections on May 4 is looming - make sure you’re registered to vote in time.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:13

Barnstaple Library will also be gaining new digital equipment and providing training and workshops on creative writing and digital content creation.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:35

Aaron Eastman will attempt to earn the Expert Field Medical Badge at a competition in Germany

Read more
Yesterday, 13:16

Tuesday night’s meeting in Barnstaple saw Dr Alison Diamond from Northern Devon Healthcare Trust quizzed about the health service review

Read more
Yesterday, 12:23

The Taw View Extra store has teamed up with Barnstaple Dementia Action Alliance and the town’s mayor to help become more dementia friendly.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications