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Tour de France in Chelmsford

Stage Three of the 2014 Tour de France, on Monday 7th July 2014, from Cambridge to London, passes through the western edge of Chelmsford. The route is shown on this map of the Tour route in Chelmsford district.

Chelmsford

Chelmsford is the county town of Essex (but a city since 2012), at the confluence of the Can and Chelmer rivers, and with a population of 110,507 (2011 census). Essex County Council is based here. It is within commuting distance of the City of London.

Chelmsford is on the Roman Londinium to Camulodonum (Colchester) road (the modern A12). There was a Roman fort here from AD60, and a civilian town grew up around it, called Caesaromagus (Caesar's market). The remains of a Roman mansio and temple have been found.

The modern name for the city comes from Ceolmaer's ford, a ford close to the site of the High Street stone bridge. Chelmsford was recorded as Celmeresfort in the Domesday Book.

Richard II spent a week in Chelmsford at the time of the peasant's revolt (1381).

During WWII, Chelmsford was an important engineering and manufacturing centre, and it was attacked by the Luftwaffe and by V2 rockets.

Engineering businesses which were based in Chelsmford include Marconi and Hoffmann Ball Bearings. Britvic (originally the British Vitamin Company) also began in Chelmsford.

Alex Dowsett, the professional cyclist, is from Chelmsford.

Tour de France in Chelmsford: the route

The Tour de France route in Chelmsford is shown on this map produced Essex County Council.

The race takes South Street out of Great Waltham, which turns into Breeds Road, going through Fanner's Green, and close to Chignal Smealy. From here, the road is called Woodhall Hill, then it becomes Chignal Road near the Melbourne Park area of Chelmsford. At the junction with the A1060 Roxwell Road, the Tour goes right on the main road, then after about 4km, it turns left on Vicarage Road, to Roxwell. It crosses Roxwell Brook in the village, then leaves Roxwell on Skreens Park Road/Elms Road.

Tour de France in Chelmsford: where to watch the race

Chelmsford City Council has organised a Tour de France Celebration and Family Fun Day in Melbourne Park, from 10am to 4pm on Monday 7th July. It's completely free, and there'll be a big screen to watch the race, plus bike rides, bike trials and jumps, bike maintenance, cycle coaching and racing. Chelmsford Sports and Atheletics Centre, which is by the park, will be running an open day, with free sports and activities. There'll also be food and refreshments, bouncy castles, and fairground rides.

(Essex CC's website says that the event is in Admirals Park, but we believe this is wrong).

Tour de France in Chelmsford: timings

The Tour de France is expected to get to the A1060 to the west of Chelmsford between 2.02 and 2.11pm on Monday 7th July 2014. The other Chelmsford timing given by the race organisers appears to be for the turn off the A1060 onto Vicarage Road to Roxwell - the riders should get to that junction between 2.06 and 2.15pm.

The publicity caravan begins to come past about 2 hours before the race.

See the full Stage 3 timings.

Tour de France in Chelmsford: road closures

The planned Tour road closures in Chelmsford district on Monday 7th July 2014 are from 8am to 5pm. The roads affected are those of the route itself - B1417, B1008, Main Road, South Street, Breeds Road, Woodhall Hill, Chignal Road, A1060 Roxwell Road, Vicarage Road, The Street, Skreens Park Road, Elms Road, and Shellow Road.

The roads have to be clear of all vehicles before they are closed, and arrangements are being made for residents to park their cars elsewhere - at Melbourne Park or Admirals Park. 

Pedestrians have access after the time of the road closures, via stewarded crossing points.

Tour de France in Chelmsford: parking

Essex CC says that there's parking in Melbourne Park and High Chelmer.