Cumbria cycling boost hope from Tour of Britain

Tour of Britain in Carlisle in 2012 Carlisle played host to the start of a stage of the 2012 race

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Health officials in Cumbria hope that hosting the Tour of Britain will encourage people to take up cycling.

The single biggest stage of the race - about 140 miles - will start and finish in the county.

Community activities coinciding with the race in September will also aim to capitalise on the interest.

A county council traffic survey showed an increase in the number of cyclists over the past year - 10.6% in the Carlisle area and 7.3% in Kendal.

Dr Rebecca Wagstaff, Cumbria's acting director of public health, said: "For most people, cycling is a safe and effective form of exercise which has broad appeal.

"It's a low-impact type of exercise, so it's easier on your joints than running or other high-impact aerobic activities, but it still helps you get into shape."

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