A huge new cycling facility has been given the green light, as part of the legacy of the Tour of Britain start in Cornwall.
The British stage race made its first visit to Cornwall in its 17-year history, as the peloton set off from Penzance on stage one.
In the week leading up to the 2021 Tour of Britain, Cornwall Council approved planning permission for a new £7million cycling hub, including a closed road circuit and a BMX track.
The facility will be there for cyclists to train in a safe environment and to get more residents, including children and people with disabilities, to cycle, and could also bring major events to the area.
Stretching over 54 acres, the Cornwall Cycle Hub will be built on land near the Newquay Aerohub Business Park.
Dr Rob White, a GP and a health leader in Cornwall, said: “This is what we have been crying out for in Cornwall, to enable health to refer to, engage with and support to promote all aspects of health. We cannot have enough of this type of enterprise in promoting healthy living and weight management to reverse the tide of type two diabetes and to support mental and physical health and wellbeing.”
The planning application was submitted after consultation with British Cycling, local schools and the Cornish cycling community, with initial funding provided by BC and Sport England.
Cornwall Council now needs to try and secure funding to being building the facility, which should take around 12 months to complete once work starts.
Member of Parliament for St Austell and Newquay, Steve Double, said: “The cycle hub is for everyone and encourages us all to be more active. It will not only give performance cyclists a safe place to train and race away from the road, but will also provide opportunities for residents with a disability to cycle, be a place of referral to help tackle mental and physical health issues, and a venue for schools and other groups to come and learn to ride safely.”
Andy Farr, British Cycling Head of Business Planning and Transformation added: “The scope of the project will include many different cycling disciplines, including mountain biking, road cycling, BMX, cyclocross and others, meaning that there should be opportunities for everyone. The South West has traditionally been under-provided for in relation to high quality cycling facilities and this hub will be a huge step forward.”
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