CROWDS of more than 33,000 are expected to descend on Abergavenny during the town’s cycling festival which this year includes the British Cycling National Time Trial Championship.

The festival attracted more than 6,000 people last year and will include a variety of races such as the Deri Dash Hill Climb which takes place on the Tumble and the Traders and Carnival Race in the town centre.

The National Championships, in association with the Argus, takes place from June 25 to June 29 and will include the Champion Sportive.

The sportive is a mass participation public ride for cyclists from beginners to experts which is split into a Bronze route of 20 miles, a Silver route of 67 miles and the full Gold route which involves a climb up the Tumble Mountain between Abergavenny and Blaenavon.

Darren Tudor, Welsh Cycling’s national coach, said: “This is probably going to be one of the best cycling festivals in the UK, without doubt. We are lucky to have it on local roads, which are fantastic.”

The British championships were held in Glasgow last year which brought in 35,000 spectators and injected £2.59 million into the Glaswegian economy.

Big names in cycling are expected to take part in the race with Olympian Laura Trott who has already signed up.

Bill Owen, organiser of the British Cycling National Road and Time Trial Championships, said: “The county is regarded around the UK as a cyclists’ playground with many of the top professional teams using it as a training base and staying in the district.

“The aim of everyone involved in both the British Cycling National Road and Time Trials Championships this month and with the Abergavenny Festival of Cycling, which took place in the county for the previous eight years, is to turn Monmouthshire into the Cycling Capital of Wales. By holding such prestigious events, which will bring tens of thousands of people to the county this month, there is every chance that this ambition can be achieved.”

A number of roads closures will be issued around the county including Castle Street, Tudor Street, and Baker Street in Abergavenny on June 27, from 4pm to 12am. The Traffic Regulation Order will come into effect between Wednesday, June 25 and Wednesday, July 30.

A spokeswoman for Monmouthshire County Council said: “We are continuing to have conversations with communities and want to reassure them we are doing everything we can to keep all disruption to a minimum. We are visiting businesses to have one to one conversations about how to get more involved and grasp the opportunities the event will bring.”

The festival takes place from June 23 to June 29 and the closing date for entries to the sportive race is June 15.

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