The Tour de France costing Normandy towns and councils almost €400,000 to stage

TourSignThe eleventh stage of the world famous Tour de France cycle race takes place in Normandy from Avranches to Mont Saint Michel on 10 July but it doesn’t come cheap at almost €400,000.

The host of each stage pays a series of fees to the organisers, the Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO), and the figures were revealed at the official signing of the contracts for the race this week.

The first fee for the town where the stage starts is €71,760 and is paid by the town of Avranches, the community and the local Manche council. Similarly as the place where the stage finishes, Mont Saint Michel and the community of Ponterson face a bill of €119,600. Finally a final entry fee is due of €196,807 split between the start and finish towns, the Manche council and the Lower Normandy regional council.

This means that Avranches pays an additional €20,927, Mont Saint Michel and Pontorson €35,807, Manche €100,000 and Lower Normandy €40,000.

The director of the Tour de France, Christian Prudhomme, was in Normandy to sign the official agreements and said it was the fulfilment of a dream for the region.

Asked about the cost, Mr Prudhomme said that the fees will be more than recouped by the publicity and extra money generated not just by the television coverage but also a huge influx of visitors for the actual race and afterwards with the backdrop of Mont Saint Michel helping to put Normandy on the world map.

‘Images of the Tour are transmitted to 190 different countries, they go everywhere. The eyes of some 15 million viewers will be trained on the south of the Manche. It is a great moment, a beautiful dream, 33 kilometres of emotion, a corridor of happy people,’ he told a press conference.

Manche council president Jean-François Le Grand said it will be hugely beneficial for the area. ‘Millions of people watching will have an enormous cultural impact for us. We are a region of cycling fans, it will be a great reward,’ he explained.

Meanwhile, Guénhaël Huet, deputy mayor of Avranches, said the whole town is delighted to be the starting point for the stage. ‘The Tour de France is part of out national heritage,’ he added.

About Ray Clancy

Ray Clancy has 20 years experience in journalism including contributing articles to print and on-line publications such as PropertyWire.com, Property World Middle East and websites for estate agents. She has also written for the Daily Telegraph and Mail on Sunday.

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