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Tour of Britain follows in the footsteps of the Milk Race 50 years on

Joe Robinson
9 Aug 2017

The Cotswold town of Stow gets to experience the Tour of Britain 50-years on from its Milk Race memories

When the Tour of Britain races through the Cotswold town of Stow-on-the-Wold on 9 September, the older members of the community may feel like they are experiencing deja-vu. 

Exactly 50-years have passed since Stow played host to the biggest bike race in Britain and again the people of this small village will get to enjoy this occassion.  

In 1967, this small village played host to the Milk Race, then Britain's biggest cycling race. Hosting a split stage, the riders finished a team time trial in the village before starting a road stage on the same day, heading towards Malvern. 

The crowd were given a spectacle when the Soviet Union national team clinched the time trial. However, locals were later given something to cheer about when British rider Les West took the overall classification. 

This year will see the Tour of Britain pass through the small village on Stage 7 from Hemel Hempstead to Cheltenham. 

Local resident Rob Brown will have the rare opportunity to see a major cycling race pass through his home for a second time, and admits that things are slightly different 50-years on. 

'When I watched the 1967 Tour pass through Stow, I was 14 and a keen photographer. I took a number of action shots at the finish line of the team time trial section.' he said. 

'The crowd was swept along with the drama but, unlike today's races, spectators were kept right off the road - partly I suppose because it remained open for traffic throughout!'

The Tour of Britain will kick off in Edinburgh on 3 September before finishing in Cardiff on 10 September. Brits Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) and Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) are expected to be amongst the starters.  

Lead Image by Rob Brown