Friday, September 7, 2012
The Tour of Britain’s so-called “Wiggo effect” is set to earn Norfolk and Suffolk a multi-million-pound windfall, according to a county councillor.
Barry Stone, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for culture, said: “We are very pleased to have the tour for the third year running – and even more pleased that Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish will be riding as it really will bring out the crowds to watch.
“It was marvellous seeing crowds for the Jubilee and torch relay, and for this cycle race, with news that Tour de France and gold medal Olympian Bradley Wiggins is coming, it will be brilliant.
“Last year it brought £3m into the economy and we will probably expect another £1m because of the ‘Wiggo effect’.
“There were 150,000 people last year and it could easily be another 100,000. It’s a brilliant boost for Norfolk and Suffolk, especially as it is the first stage.”
Aside from the economic benefits, hosting the Tour of Britain in Norfolk once again brought a number of benefits to different sections of society.
Some examples of the legacy activity that has come off the back of hosting the event include:
Tour of Britain legacy money has been used to start a Go Ride junior cycling club based at the Discovery Centre in King’s Lynn.
This runs every Tuesday evening and is progressing well with a regular membership of around 12 youngsters. Previously no such opportunity existed.
The Go Ride project has been enhanced by a successful Borough Council bid for £10,000 to Sport England’s Small Grants scheme.
This has resulted in the purchase of 14 bikes and a trailer and the employment of a Level Two coach to work with the West Norfolk School Sports Partnership to offer six-week programmes of fun Go Ride activity to West Norfolk schools throughout 2011-12 – creating a link to the existing Go Ride club and boosting membership.
After work in 2010 with five Broadland schools, three after-school cycling clubs have been established and this work will continue over the autumn and next spring to encourage further clubs to be developed.
In March, Broadland District Council hosted a British Cycling level one cycling course for 16 adults. Most of the participants on the course are now involved in after-school clubs, or community sessions.