I am aware a lot of preparatory work has gone into this proposal and I am grateful for the interests of the organisers. However, I am concerned that there has been little consultation.
I welcome that the Isle of Wight Council has affirmed that the event must meet the following requirements: the event must be safe, meeting the Isle of Wight Council’s Safety Advisory Group (SAG) requirements; that it must be properly funded and organised; and, finally, the event must respect and support local community needs and concerns.
We have significant noise and speed issues on the Military Road and other routes and I am aware of the impact that these have on the lives of nearby Islanders. Unless long-term funding for noise and speed measures are included on at least the Military Road section, I fear this race may turn the route into a race track all year round. The Island is one of the most precious environments in England, and I want to ensure large-scale events respect that.
I have also sought more information on how this race will impact on cycling, not just over one weekend but in the build-up too. The Military Road is a popular cycle route and encouraging cycling is important both for Islanders but also for visitors.
On the Island, we accept some occasional disruption to life brought by big, one-off events, but we need to make sure that the benefits outweigh the costs.
I will follow developments closely and I have noted the concerns raised.