New cycle centre gets Olympic boost

CYCLISTS in Ipswich could get a brand new centre thanks to London winning the Olympic bid.Two years ago The Evening Star revealed proposals for a new cycling centre at Ravenswood.

CYCLISTS in Ipswich could get a brand new centre thanks to London winning the Olympic bid.

Two years ago The Evening Star revealed proposals for a new cycling centre at Ravenswood.

These proposals were put on ice because of the uncertainty about what was needed in the run-up to the decision on London's Olympic bid.

But now that has been successful, campaigners are hoping that their application for National Lottery cash will be successful.


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And the town could also see the construction of a new cycling velodrome and multi-sports arena in the wake of the Olympic bid.

Steve Grimwood, who is behind the bid for the cycling centre, said the decision had raised a number of possibilities for the town.

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He said: "Our original lottery bid wasn't proceeded with because it was not clear whether we were bidding for a regional centre or for one which met international standards.

"Now we know that the Olympics are coming we can focus on what is needed – a full cycle centre that can be used in the run-up to the games.

"I am really hopeful that now things will happen."

The original proposal did not include an indoor velodrome, but now that is firmly on the agenda because of the plans for a university in Ipswich.

Mr Grimwood said: "There is a lack of sports facilities directly linked to the university, and that is something that people in the town are anxious to address.

"What we are looking at is getting support from the university and the borough council to develop and indoor velodrome which could also be used as an indoor arena with spectator seating which is something this town needs.

"As well as cycling it could also be used for indoor athletics and sports like basketball."

He said it was quite possible for these facilities to be developed in time for the Olympics.

"All the planning has been done and the site has been identified. All that is needed is the finance. A velodrome is not a complicated thing to build.

"If we can get the finance agreed it will be all systems go – and there will be a real benefit for Ipswich," he said.

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