Hats off to Gloucestershire County Council for supporting international cycling in the coming months which, I am sure, will pay dividends in terms of investment in our glorious county.
They are supporting Gloucestershire’s first-ever full stage of the Tour of Britain on Friday, September 9.
And when a stage sponsor dropped out at the last minute, the county also decided to support the Women’s tour stage through the county on Wednesday, June 8.
This is shrewd business. On average, the net economic benefit of the Tour of Britain has been worth £3.5 million to the stage hosts.
And Gloucestershire will be seen on ITV 4 which will be broadcasting live with a one hour highlights show each evening.
The Women’s Tour will also have highlights on ITV with coverage of both races shown worldwide on Eurosport and GCN.
Councillor Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council said: “Events such as these are key to helping our economy thrive and showcase-to a significant .international audience-all that Gloucestershire has to offer.”
Mark is right. Investment is about place and the value of that place and its community to the commercial investor.
In this column recently, I have talked about two investors who came to Stroud not knowing anything about the town.
But what got them interested? The Sunday Times announcement that Stroud was the best place to live in Britain.
So, I see this initiative by the county council as valuable to our businesses and to investors to attract them to the area.
The message is clear: Gloucestershire is a great place to invest and live.
And for those of us who live here these two races with elite cyclists will bring a sense of pride to our towns and villages as they speed through them.
I hope that businesses on the routes will come out and cheer the riders on and local schools as well.
Cycling is gathering momentum in Gloucestershire with more and more cycle lanes on our roads.
These two races will help investment, business and community pride.The Tour of Britain | Stage SixThese two races will help investment, business and community pride.
For more details on the Women’s tour stage, click here:
For more details on Gloucestershire’s Tour of Britain stage, click here:
Ian Mean is Director of Business West for Gloucestershire.