Published: May 20, 2008
'Park and ride' scheme planned for Burnham cycle race day

A free 'park and ride' scheme and extra parking spaces will be introduced in Burnham-On-Sea when large crowds of spectators are expected to line the town's streets to see the end of the South West Stage of the Tour of Britain cycle race this autumn. was first to report in February that our town had been picked as the final destination for the September 9th race, which will be broadcast on digital TV channel ITV4 and featured in the national press.

Town councillors discussed the parking arrangements at their meeting on Monday evening (May 19th) where it was confirmed that plans for a 'park and ride' scheme are being considered to ensure spectators can park outside the town and catch a bus into Burnham to watch the race.

Cllr Eric Gill, Chairman of the council's Town Improvements Commitee, said: "The organisers from the County Council have talks underway with Sanders Garden World and the owners of the Oaktree speedway arena to provide off-site parking."

This was confirmed on Tuesday morning (May 20th) when Graham Bagley, project manager for the South West stage of the race, told "We are working on a free park and ride scheme with several parties, so even if you can't get into Burnham you will still be able to watch the race."

The comments came amid fears that the spectators might be put off coming to Burnham if there is inadequate parking. Cllr Neville Jones said at Monday's meeting: "If there isn't enough parking it will be a complete waste of time for the race to come here. The whole idea is that the event should benefit Burnham."

Mr Bagley added: "We want to reassure the council and local traders that we want to work with them and ensure that proper parking arrangements are in place."

He also confirmed that King Alfred School, which is on the route of the race, will be closing early by 1pm on the day of the race.

The 185km South West Stage of the cycle race will be the longest in the whole race and will have a backdrop of stunning scenery as it takes riders past some of Somerset's hidden gems and idyllic Devon countryside.

Setting off from near Chard in the south of Somerset, the riders will pass through two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Exmoor National Park, and then on to the first ever coastal finish in Burnham. The finishing line will be in Burnham's Marine Drive. Click here for a large map of the route.


Excitement grows as route of cycle race is announced
Large image showing full route of the cycle race [PDF Document]
It's official! Burnham is confirmed as the finish line for top cycle race
Exclusive: Burnham set to host Tour of Britain Cycle Race


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