There can surely be nobody who is still unaware that the Tour de France is coming to Essex on July 7th. The County and District Councils have provided leaflets and newsletters to every home detailing the route, the timings, the disruption, the expected crowds. Not to be outdone, we have looked at all the information available and picked out the information that relates specifically to Epping to try and give residents a clearer idea of what it will be like here in the Town.
The race will enter the Town from North Weald, passing down the Plain, Palmers Hill and the High Street and leaving the Town via the High Rd en route to London. – The expected arrival time of the race itself in Epping is around 2.30 -2.45pm - The caravan will arrive up to an hour earlier with sponsors floats and entertainment. – Several hundred support vehicles will follow behind the cyclists themselves. – There is a mini-sprint stage which will have its finish line outside Barclays/ Costa.
There will be massive disruption on the day of the race on the road network. The route through Epping will be closed from 9.00 am to vehicular traffic. It will not re-open until around 5 pm. It will be possible to cross the High Street on foot at the existing pedestrian crossings until shortly before the caravan arrives. Palmers Hill will not have barriers beside the Town Greens so pedestrians will be able to cross there freely until just before the caravan arrives. Other roads in the Town will be open, with barriers only at the junctions themselves. There will be marshals at all the junctions.
There will be around 20 portable toilets provided in the Town, a large block near the existing toilets in the Cottis Lane Car Park and a smaller block on the other side of the High Street near Grove Lane.
St John’s Ambulance will be providing first aid support in the Town. There will be two medical treatment facilities provided, one on the forecourt of the Duke of Wellington and one on the access road behind the High Street outside the EFDC depot (opposite Station Rd). Ambulances will be stationed in St Johns Rd and Clarkes Lane.
Disability Viewing Areas
Two areas have been arranged specifically for disabled residents to view the race, outside the Fire Station and on Grove Lane. Space is limited and residents should contact Peter Charman at the District Council to book places. He can be contacted at PCharman@eppingforestdc.gov.uk
Additional Car Parking will be available on the day at Shaftesbury Farm, Lindsey Street, Thornwood Rd and St Johns School Crowds The organisers have anticipated that there are likely to be up to 20,000 people in Epping to watch the race, with as many as 6,000 of these expected in the market area alone. The event is massive so please plan ahead and arrive in plenty of time to avoid disappointment.
There will be a funfair at the Stonards Hill Recreation Ground to entertain before or after the race itself. The Hemnall Social Club on the junction of Clarkes Lane is organising activities for children, entertainment and face painting and of course refreshments
From Essex County Council: Click Here
From Epping Forest District Council: Click Here
Featured picture courtesy of Rob Ibjema http://paintingletour.blogspot.co.uk