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Last Updated: Thursday, 7 June 2007, 12:48 GMT 13:48 UK
Cycle race 'needs more publicity'
Cyclists generic
Cyclists will visit Kent and Medway on day two of the race
Medway Council has been accused of failing to publicise the British leg of the Tour de France, which will pass through the county of Kent next month.

The event will see 200 riders cycle from London to Canterbury on 8 July, watched by thousands of spectators.

A number of roads in the area will be shut on the day, but residents have complained of too little information.

Opposition Labour councillor Bill Esterton said "poor planning" was to blame. The council refused to comment.

"It's a great shame because here we have one of the world's leading sporting events coming to Medway - a great opportunity for local people to benefit," Mr Esterton said.

Public meetings

"The council is completely failing to tell people the impact it's going to have, so the danger is that this will be remembered for all the wrong reasons - for poor organisation and poor planning - rather than the great sporting spectacle and the opportunity to get Medway on the map."

He added that Medway Council had four weeks to change its approach.

Joanna Dawson, who lives on St Mary's Island, near Chatham Maritime, said people needed to know the exact time when the cyclists would be passing through, and when roads would reopen.

Medway Council said it was planning to hold a series of public meetings this month to tell residents how the race will affect them.

The first meeting will be held at Gillingham Library on Thursday evening.


SEE ALSO
Le Tour looks for London boost
02 Feb 07 |  Cycling
Tour unveils detailed 2007 route
15 Jan 07 |  Cycling

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