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Bury St Edmunds
This year’s Women’s Tour will begin in the historic town of Colchester, which previously hosted a stage start in the 2021 race, on Monday 6 June. Over 100 of the world’s best riders will again set off from the Colchester Sports Park at Northern Gateway, the town’s acclaimed new multi-sport facility that features a closed road cycle circuit.
Stage one will head into Colchester town centre and through the wider borough before crossing into Suffolk and towards the finish line on Angel Hill in Bury St Edmunds. This will mark the cathedral town’s third appearance in race history, although it will be the first finish there since Marianne Vos won the finale of the 2014 edition.
Total elevation: 1,197m
Colchester Sports Park at Northern Gateway – 11am
A137 Parsons Heath – 11:20am
Brantham Hill (cat 3) – 12:14pm
Holbrook – 12:25pm
Hadleigh – 1:12pm
Bildeston (cat 3) – 1:27pm
Angel Hill, Bury St Edmunds – 3:04pm
Click here for the full stage timetable
Host venue for the second time
With a history dating back over 2,000 years, Colchester was once Britain’s First City and a former Roman capital. Now a thriving modern town 50 miles north east of London, it is steeped in history and culture and home to a vast array of events and attractions, making it one of the region’s most popular destinations.
Attractions include Colchester Castle Museum housed within Europe’s largest Norman Keep; the hugely popular Colchester Zoo; the futuristic Firstsite gallery and not forgetting world famous oysters. Visitors will also find superb independent and big brand shopping and a choice of great places to eat, drink and stay. See visitcolchester.com for more info.
The brand-new 76-acre Colchester Sports Park at Northern Gateway features a fully floodlit one-mile closed cycle track, a learn to ride facility and cycle pump track alongside two latest generation 3G pitches and seven traditional grass rugby pitches. The sports centre building provides a five-court sports hall with facilities for a variety of sports including badminton, futsal and indoor cricket. The building also houses a fully equipped fitness suite, exercise and dance studios, an interactive velo studio, meeting rooms and a café.
Located on the Essex/Suffolk border on the edge of Constable Country, Colchester can be reached via National Cycle Routes 1 and 51, by A12 if driving, or within an hour by train from London Liverpool Street.
Vibrant, with a growing population, Colchester is a great place to live, work or visit.
The £28.8 million Colchester Sports Park at Northern Gateway, located off junction 28 of the A12, is Colchester’s newest sporting facility.
Designed to encourage more people across the borough and beyond to discover, enjoy and improve their cycling, it is unique in Essex in featuring a 1-mile, floodlit cycle track. With multiple individual circuits, the track is perfect for road cycling of all abilities and is popular with both novices and cycling enthusiasts alike.
The Sports Park’s Learn to Ride area provides a fun pathway for children and young people to learn how to cycle safely. Qualified Go-Ride Coaches, employed and insured by British Cycling, offer a wide range of cycle coaching depending on an individual’s needs. The Learn to Ride area is free for public use so long as coaching sessions are not booked.
The Pump Track is perfect for children and young riders looking for an ‘off road’ experience, whether they are using a pump bike or BMX.
Cycling sessions for people with disabilities are also available at the cycle track. The Sports Park has accessible cycles for hire to allow for everyone to cycle independently.
Inside the sports centre, the interactive Velo Studio provides an intense workout for experienced riders, allowing them to continue to train when weather conditions are poor.
The facility is part of a wider sport and leisure development at the Northern Gateway, being project managed by Colchester Amphora Trading Ltd on behalf of Colchester Borough Council. It has been supported by funding from groups including British Cycling, Sport England, and from England and Wales Cricket Board.
Click here to book a visit and hire a bike.
BURY ST EDMUNDS
Host venue for the third time
Known as the jewel in the crown of Suffolk, Bury St Edmunds is a town full of riches and delights. It is nestled in the beautiful countryside and steeped in legend and history.
The medieval grid comprises of lanes brimming with independent shops, restaurants, and cafes, leading to the picturesque Abbey Gardens, home to the ruins of the former Benedictine Abbey. Adjacent to the park is St Edmundsbury Cathedral which will be celebrating its millennium anniversary with a host of events throughout 2022.
Bury St Edmunds boasts a varied and extensive activities and events calendar that provides something for everyone, from the Whitsun Fayre to the Bury St Edmunds Food and Drink Festival, and not to forget the panto at the Theatre Royal. The town is also home to an award-winning venue, The Apex, which offers a diverse selection of artists, bands, comedy acts, plus community events. Discover more at What’s On West Suffolk.
West Suffolk has a wealth of places to visit during your stay. Head towards Newmarket, the home of British horse racing, then weave your way through the country roads and find a Norman castle in Clare. Continue your journey and uncover true treasures at the Mildenhall and District Museum, then unwind in the tranquility of the fabulous Brandon Country Park. If you fancy going further afield start your journey at East Town Park, Haverhill where you can join the Stour Valley Walk and head towards either Cambridgeshire or Essex.
Bury St Edmunds is connected to the National Cycle Network through routes 13 and 51, Discover Suffolk has lots of great options for exploring the rest of the beautiful county by walking or riding. Extra cycle lanes have also been added to the town centre in recent years to encourage cycling.
Attending this stage of the Women’s Tour? Our spectator information guides will help you plan your visit to the UK’s leading women’s cycle race.
These guides are produced especially for the event by our host venues, ensuring that fans can benefit from specialist local information to ensure they have a memorable day at the Tour.
Click here to download our Colchester spectator guide (PDF)
Click here to download our Bury St Edmunds spectator guide (PDF)
The Women’s Tour operates a rolling road closure system, as opposed to a full road closure, to minimise disruption as much as possible.
Roads along the stage route will only be closed for a short window – approximately 30 minutes – while the race passes through.
Watch the video above for more information on how our rolling road closure system works.
Click here for more details of stage one road closures.
There’s no better way of watching the action at this year’s Women’s Tour than with our hospitality packages!
Secure a front-row seat at our stage starts and finishes, topped off with delicious food and drinks specifically chosen for cycling fans.
Fans can now book their hospitality passes for the Colchester start and Bury St Edmunds finish via Sportsbreaks.com, the official hospitality partner of the Women’s Tour.
Additionally, our expert team can build bespoke packages to suit your needs. Contact Seb Roberts for more information.