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Fast-paced entertainment proves a big hit with fans

Posted onPosted on 3rd Aug

The Newark Town Centre Races proved a hit with visitors as people packed the streets of Newark for an evening of fast-paced entertainment.

Newark and Sherwood District Council worked alongside Generation Pro Cycling Events to deliver the summer evening of races.

The event started with Rupert Brooke, who cycled 200 miles from London to Paris in memory of his dad, leading out riders in the Community Ride.

Rupert headed nearly 60 other riders during the ride around the circuit, alongside hero Ed Clancy.

A Brompton Bike race followed, which featured workers from some of the sponsors of the race.

The under 12s, 14s and 16s race and the amateur/regional race took place after, followed by the women’s professional race. The night then finished with the men’s professional race.

Fans littered the streets to cheer on riders as they snaked around a 1.2km circuit, travelling on Kirk Gate, Middlegate, Stodman Street, Castle Gate, Lombard Street, Cartergate, Bridge Street and through the cobbled Market Square.

The winners throughout the night included:

Under 12’s race (boys) – Billy Ladle (Kirklees Cycling Academy)
Under 12’s race (girls) – Jaime Downing (Wolverhampton Wheelers)
Under 14’s race (boys) – Albie Jones (North Cheshire Clarion)
Under 14’s race (girls) – Charlotte Lissaman (Newark Castle CC)
Under 16’s race (boys) – John White (North Cheshire Clarion)
Under 16’s race (girls) – Emily Middlebrooke (Otley CC)
Amateur race – Alex Galpin (Bourne Whls CC)
Women’s professional race – Emma Jeffers (JRC-INTERFLON Race Team)
Men’s professional race – Jacob Scott (team WiV Sungod)

Newark town centre saw an increase in visitors with 31% more people in the town centre compared to a normal Friday. People stayed longer in town too, spending more than three hours in Newark. The all-time average footfall in the town between 5pm and 11pm was over 1,000/

However, during the races sensors recorded more than 3,000 people in Newark between 5pm and 11pm.

David Whitton, who runs Bentleys Fish and Chips, said: “The evening was great for us and we had plenty of customers buy fish and chips and watch the race from the sides. The atmosphere in the town was electric and our customers enjoyed the entertainment.”

Shannon Bromell, manager of Soup Dwagon on Chain Lane, said: “It was a fantastic evening in the town and we had a very busy period of trading. It was nice to have such an entertaining event in Newark and we really enjoyed the night.”

Seven-year-old Rupert, who led the first Community Ride, added: “Riding with Ed was amazing. He did a ‘wheelie’, which was really cool. He also taught me to do a track stand, which I have been practising. I really wanted to overtake the mayor!”

Shortly before his race Rupert was presented with a fundraising cheque. He is raising money for Children’s Bereavement Centre and has already broke his target of £30,000.

You can show your support for Rupert by donating to his cause here:

Rachel Wilson, fundraising manager at the centre, said: “It has been an absolute privilege to meet and get to know Rupert over the last couple of months.

“He is a very determined young man and I was never in any doubt he would smash his challenge and cycle from London to Paris in four days. We have watched his fundraising grow over recent weeks as he raised his target as the sponsorship came in.

“He has touched the hearts of so many people and received donations from across the globe, often with emotional and inspirational messages attached.

“We have even had people search out and contact the charity directly by phone and letter to say how much Rupert’s story has touched them and to make a donation. Rupert’s incredible achievement has inspired so many people and the funds he has raised will ensure that the Children’s Bereavement Centre can be there to continue to offer the support that is so desperately needed to other local children and young people, just like Rupert.”

Coun David Lloyd, leader of the district council, said: “It was great to see the feedback from supporters and spectators in our town during the event. It was a really positive atmosphere in our town centre with some shops and restaurants indicating better trading.

“Events like this help in putting Newark on the map and we hope it encourages more residents in the district to pick up two wheels as we work towards our 20-Minute Cycle Town project which is part of our Towns Fund deal secured with central Government.

“As a district we are geared up for plenty of cycling related projects and activities this summer with the Tour of Britain paying a visit to some of our other rural towns and villages this summer.”

Chris Lawrence, event organiser, Generation Pro Cycle Events, said: “The event was a real success for Newark. There are lots of learnings, and future events will be even bigger and even better.

“The racing was excellent and gave the British Cycling National Circuit Series a fitting conclusion.

“These events are critical to showcase towns to drive future footfall benefiting business in the long-term.”