Town prepares to welcome the Tour of Britain

Britain’s biggest professional cycling race will pass through Eastbourne, Hailsham and East Dean for the first time as the county hosts part of the penultimate leg of the Tour of Britain.

The provisional route for stage seven on Saturday September 13 will see the world’s top riders enter the county. The tour heads west through Seaford, Newhaven and Lewes, briefly re-entering West Sussex to take on the famous climb of Ditchling Beacon before passing through Brighton for the finish.

East Sussex County Council leader Keith Glazier said, “We are delighted to welcome such a high-profile cycling event to East Sussex and look forward to the visitors this will attract.

“This will provide a boost for local businesses and support the growing enthusiasm for cycling as a healthy choice for leisure and everyday journeys in the county.”

The stage, which begins in Camberley, Surrey, traverses West Sussex through Petworth, Billingshurst, Horsham and Haywards Heath before entering East Sussex.

After Ditchling Beacon, the provisional route sees the race head into Brighton, passing through Coldean and down Lewes Road, Bear Road, Wilson Avenue and Marine Parade before reaching the finish line in Madeira Drive. The stage finish in Brighton will come just over 20 years after the Tour de France finish in the city, and 24 years since the last time a Tour of Britain came to Brighton.

Race director Mick Bennett said, “We are delighted to be bringing the Tour of Britain to Sussex and Brighton for the first time in the race’s modern history.

“While the finish in Brighton is definitely one for the sprinters, the South Downs and in the closing kilometres will pose a real challenge to them and set up what I’m sure will be a fantastic finish on the seafront.”