AS the world’s top cyclists get set to saddle up for this year’s Tour of Britain, Gloucestershire County Council has started preparations of its own.

Despite the route and its condition being given the seal of approval by Tour of Britain officials, the county council has carried out its own detailed inspection, to ensure a smooth and safe experience for riders and spectators alike.

This has been led by an experienced member of the safety inspection team who is also a keen cyclist.

Like the rest of the county, the route is already maintained to national safety standards, however further work to fix and patch potholes at a number of extra locations will be completed in time for the tour to make its way through the county on Wednesday, September 10.

Cllr Vernon Smith, cabinet member for highways, said: “We are delighted to be part of this year’s Tour of Britain.

"The highways team have taken great pride in ensuring Gloucestershire roads are safe for riders.

“We are really looking forward to welcoming the cyclists to the county.

"We hope that major events like this will visit Gloucestershire again and that residents and visitors will continue to choose cycling as a form of leisure and transport within our beautiful county.”

The 2014 Friends Life Tour of Britain starts on Sunday and lasts a wees. It includes nine stages over eight days of racing.

Stage four, will see the team’s cycle through the county, beginning in Winchcombe, through Cheltenham, Painswick, Stroud and Nailsworth, before heading through South Gloucestershire towards Bristol.

Rolling road closures will be in place throughout the tour to minimise disruption and to keep spectators safe.

Updates will be posted via social media @GlosCC and @GlosRoads.