Aviva Tour of Britain
The Aviva Tour of Britain was the UK’s largest professional cycle race and Britain’s biggest free-to-attend-live annual sporting event. The race travelled through 29 communities in Northumberland covering approximately 112miles (181kms) in the county over two days.
On Stage Four of the tour, the race started in Scotland and then entered Northumberland heading along a route from Ford, where a SKODA King of the Mountains competition took place, to Wooler and Alnwick, before continuing down the spectacular Northumberland coastline to finish the leg in Blyth.
The idea was even used by others celebrating the tour. Chair of Prudhoe Town Council and county councillor, Eileen Burt, said; “The mural has kicked off Prudhoe’s acknowledgement and celebration of the Tour of Britain in a gloriously colourful way. This builds on the town’s established tradition of artistic commemoration which has included art in bus shelters to celebrate the 2012 Olympics, our Town Twinning relationship with Mitry-Mory, and the resurrection of the Prudhoe Miners Race.”
The idea to brighten up the town with murals in bus shelters came from Councillor George McCreedy and they have been designed and painted by artist, John Craggs, from Rothbury, often working alongside local youth groups. For this mural, he scanned images of the Tour and designed a painting to fit on the back wall that is 5m by 6m. The mural took a day to do.
He said: “I had to remove the old mural and prepare the wall, painting on a base layer of white. I then sprayed on my design using an aerosol to apply the special paint.
“The paint is the best you can get – high pigmentation paint, UV and frost resistant, and water repellent, specially designed for murals and it lasts for years.”
Our bus shelter (opposite Waterworld), designed and created by John Craggs, for and on behalf of Prudhoe Town Council was appreciated far and wide, on social media.
The Town Council added to the Northumberland theme with displays of red and yellow flowers thanks to the planting work of Hollybush Nursery and Landscaping and fabulous bunting across the Front Street.
The shop front competition sponsored by Prudhoe Town Council saw a great response, with windows appearing right up to the day before the race. In addition to business displays, local people really got into the spirit of the event with bikes, banners and quirky displays throughout the town
The overall winner of the Best Tour of Britain Business Display was Ball’s Restaurant and Anne Blakeburn was delighted to receive her award and £500 holiday vouchers for Co-op Travelcare in Prudhoe. Anne said “Her Majesty was very sorry she could not be here today to collect the award, however she enjoyed taking tea at Ball’s of Prudhoe whilst enjoying the race”.