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£1.1Million Tour of Britain Boost for Ribble Valley

Tour Of Britain
Petr Vakoc crosses the finishing line in Stage 2 of the 2015 Aviva Tour of Britain. The event attracted 180,000 spectators and gave Ribble Valley and Pendle a £2.1million boost.
Published Wednesday, 02 December 2015

Ribble Valley received a £1.1million boost from Stage Two of the 2015 Aviva Tour of Britain.

The event, hosted by Ribble Valley Borough Council and Pendle Council on Monday, 7 September, started in Clitheroe and finished in Colne.

Shops, hotels and travel companies reaped the benefits according to an independent analysis carried out on behalf of Tour organiser SweetSpot, with a £2.1million boost across the two boroughs.

The report highlights that an estimated 180,000 spectators attended the event, 25 per cent of them from outside the North West.

Other key findings include:

  • 11 per cent of visitors stayed overnight 
  • Day visitors spent about per group £45.66 and overnight visitors about £72.24 per group on food and drink, entertainment, local travel and shopping 
  • 38 per cent of spectators came with their families
  • 67 per cent were inspired to cycle more often
  • 91 per cent described the event as ‘very enjoyable’ and gave it a rating of 4.5 out of 5

The race, described by Tour of Britain organisers as having the most exciting finish of all of the 2015 stages, was broadcast in 129 countries around the world. It was featured in the local, regional and national media, national cycling magazines and on local and regional television and radio. 

Ribble Valley Borough Council leader Stuart Hirst said: “The Tour of Britain was an ambitious undertaking by Ribble Valley and Pendle Councils, and our respective communities pulled out the stops to make the event a success.

“The event attracted a spectacular number of spectators and showcased the two boroughs to a national and international audience.

“As these figures show, we are reaping the benefits in terms of a significant economic boost and indications are that there have been repeat visits to our two boroughs from spectators, as well as visitor enquiries from across the world.

“Our thanks go to everyone who helped to make the event such a fantastic success.”

Councillor Mohammed Iqbal, leader of Pendle Council, said: “Bringing the Tour of Britain to Ribble Valley and Pendle proved to be a winning idea.

“It boosted the local economy, gave people a fantastic day out and raised our profile regionally, nationally and internationally.

“Hosting and promoting the big race was a major operation involving residents, schools, community groups, organisations and businesses. 

“The collaboration between us and Ribble Valley Borough Council was a real team effort. 

“I hope it will have a lasting legacy through repeat visits and people feeling inspired to visit us after seeing the breathtaking aerial footage.”

Nick Rudge, managing director at Welcome Cottages, headline sponsor of Stage Two, said: “We are already seeing the longer term benefits of welcoming the Tour of Britain to Lancashire, with increased interest in holiday accommodation in the area. 

“It was a truly fantastic event and we were extremely proud to join the local community and visitors in cheering on the riders as they passed through our beautiful boroughs.”

Tour of Britain race director Mick Bennett said: “This year’s Stage Two was a great success and a reflection of the hard work of Ribble Valley Borough Council and Pendle Council in bringing Britain’s premier road cycling event to their boroughs.  

“The crowds in Clitheroe, Colne and on the route were among the largest and best we saw anywhere in 2015, and we are delighted by the positive impact of Stage Two on the two boroughs.”

Marketing Lancashire said there was a 153 per cent increase in traffic to the Ribble Valley page on the Visit Lancashire web site during August and September.

Stage 2 of the 2015 Aviva Tour of Britain saw the world’s top cyclists, including Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish, power through Ribble Valley and Pendle on a tough 162km circular route from Clitheroe to Colne amid glorious sunshine.

The stage was won by Czech national champion Petr Vakoc, after the ride of his life in a thrilling finish in Colne, with Edvald Boasson Hagen of MTN Qhubeka winning the overall Tour of Britain following.

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