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Businesses urged to 'embrace' the UCI Road World Cycling Championships

Businesses urged to 'embrace' the UCI Road World Cycling Championships

Published by The Stray FM News Team at 12:33pm 21st August 2019.

It's exactly a month to go until the nine-day event gets underway in Harrogate.

  • After concerns were raised by some businesses, organisers are urging them to 'embrace' the event.
  • Bosses have admitted there will inevitably be some travel disruption, but say there'll still be plenty of opportunities for local businesses to make money.
  • The event is expected to attract thousands of people to Harrogate from 21st September to 29th September.

A month today, Yorkshire will welcome the UCI Road World Cycling Championships, with Harrogate having been chosen as the main base for the event.

Each day's racing will finish in the town, and teams will use it as their main base.

Around 1,400 of the world's top riders are expected to take part across the nine days.

While many people are looking forward to seeing an elite sporting event on their doorstep, some local businesses have raised concerns that travel disruption could affect their trade.

A number of them are apparently considering closing altogether for the duration of the championships.

However, organisers have today sought to allay their fears, and called on them to 'embrace' the event.

They've admitted there will inevitably be some travel disruption, but say the large number of people the cycling teams will be bringing with them, as well as the thousands of spectators, will provide extra customers for many businesses in the Harrogate district, and the wider region.

Speaking to Stray FM this morning, Andy Hindley, the CEO of Yorkshire 2019, said:

"If you close, I can guarantee you won't sell anything. Having said that, the championships aren't going to work for every business, but I think they'll work for a lot more businesses than the businesses are expecting. You've got a number of people coming for a long period of time, so you've got to embrace that and find ways to entice them into your shop."

"If you sell kitchens or if you're a sofa shop, then yes, I can understand you saying 'well I'm not going to sell anything during that week'. But these are not 'off-the'cuff' purchases, so a customer who's going to buy it may buy it slightly earlier, or they may buy it slightly later. I don't think those customers will be put off by the fact that they can't come on a specific day."

The races will finish in Harrogate, but parts of Craven, Nidderdale, Ripon, Otley and Wetherby will all feature over the nine days, click here to see full details of the routes.