Northern Ireland

Gran Fondo: Travel disruption expected as roads close

Gran Fondo Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Police are advising anyone travelling to the event to get there early

The Gran Fondo cycling event is set to return to Northern Ireland for a second time on Sunday.

It is expected to cause some disruption as roads will close to allow cyclists to pass through the two routes.

The event starts and finishes in Belfast's Titanic quarter - one route heads towards Strangford Lough and the main race heads to the Mournes.

Closures will be in place across various parts of NI with controlled gateway crossings in operation.

Full details, route maps and road closures are available on the Gran Fondo website.

The mass participation cycling event for amateurs and professionals was held for the first time in June 2015 as a legacy to the Giro d'Italia, one of world cycling's major races, which started in Northern Ireland the previous year.

Image caption The mass participation cycling event for amateurs and professionals was held for the first time in June 2015

Police are advising anyone travelling to the event to get there before the road closures take effect, and all other travellers to allow extra time for their journey.

Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd said: "Police are working hard to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum on Sunday.

"We have invested significant effort in planning, alongside organisers and partner agencies, to ensure that events like this pass off successfully and with as little disruption to normal everyday life as is possible.

"For the safety of riders and spectators it is essential that all roads are clear from vehicles and that no one parks on any of the planned routes."

Only cyclists involved in the race, official support vehicles and emergency services will be allowed on the planned route.

Access to the George Best Belfast City Airport and Belfast Port will not be affected, but a significant policing operation will be in place.

Belfast City Council has special arrangements in place for anyone wishing to visit Roselawn Cemetery on Sunday.

More on this story