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Tour de France: Last minute preparations under way in Stratford as crowds arrive

11:19 07 July 2014

Workers erect the final crowd control barriers along the route on Westfield Avenue.
Photo: David Mirzoeff

Workers erect the final crowd control barriers along the route on Westfield Avenue. Photo: David Mirzoeff

Archant

Last minute preparations are under way in Stratford for the Tour de France as the first of the day’s excited spectators arrived.

Trudy Sharam, 39, the first spectator on Westfield Avenue
Photo: David MirzoeffTrudy Sharam, 39, the first spectator on Westfield Avenue Photo: David Mirzoeff

Volunteers and TfL staff were erecting crowd barriers in Westfield Avenue and in Stratford High Street as the road closures took effect.

Magenta directional signs and pockets of volunteers, some called Tour Makers, and TfL staff were dotted across the area as they made preparations to ensure the day goes well for both spectators and the riders who are expeccted this afternoon on the third leg of the 21 stage race.

One of the first to arrive in Westfield was Trudy Sharam, 39, who lives in the Olympic Village.

Keen cyclist Trudy said: “Its the ultimate in cycling races and its a big favourite for me. I watch it every year on TV and i think its amazing.

Tour Maker Peter Cornwell
Photo: David MirzoeffTour Maker Peter Cornwell Photo: David Mirzoeff

“Its on my list of things to do and Iam prepared with snacks and drinks.”

Just as the London 2012 Olympics relied on volunteers, so does the Tour de France which has 10,000 tour makers along the three stages in Britain.

Peter Cornwell, from Norwich, is leading a team of 15 tour makers whose job is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of spectators.

Small groups of spectators are arriving in the area, grabbing the spot they hope will give them the best view of the riders who are due to set off from Cambridge at noon.

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