Surrey County Council is holding a public consultation on whether to keep hosting cycling festival Prudential RideLondon, which has enabled charities to raise more than £77m in seven years.
The consultation will run until 16 February and inform the council’s decision on whether to allow the event to continue in Surrey after 2020.
Prudential RideLondon is a two-day cycling festival that sees thousands of riders fundraising for charity. In 2019, more than £11.5m was raised.
A chance for cyclists to raise money for a cause that they care about
Many charities raise six-figure sums in the event every year. In 2019, British Heart Foundation (BHF) was the nominated charity of the year for the festival’s 100-mile race for amateurs and raised around £300,000.
Liam O'Reilly, fundraising events programme lead at the British Heart Foundation, said: “The British Heart Foundation (BHF) has taken part in Prudential RideLondon since it began in 2013. The event gives cyclists from across the UK the chance to come together, ride together and raise money for a cause that they care about.
“Last year, the BHF in association with the Miles Frost Fund was Prudential RideLondon’s charity partner and saw 440 BHF riders take on the epic 100-mile ride, raising almost £300,000 to help fund life-saving heart research.
“Over the last seven years, Prudential RideLondon has raised a significant amount of money for the BHF – all of which goes towards helping the 7.4 million people in the UK living with heart and circulatory diseases.”
While all the event costs are met by the organisers, four of the seven races pass through Surrey and result in traffic disruptions.
The council said that if it is decided not to continue hosting the event, it is “committed” to run it one last time in 2021, “to enable the event organisers enough time to find an alternative host”.
“If the event continues to be hosted by Surrey it would be along a similar route with possible changes for operational reasons.”
Prudential RideLondon is managed by the London & Surrey Cycling Partnership (LSCP), a partnership between London Marathon Events and SweetSpot Group.
The London Marathon Charitable Trust awards grants to support charitable projects in the local areas where the events take place. Since 2013, more than 70 projects in Surrey have received £4.3m in total.
Hugh Brasher, event director at London Marathon Events, said: “We are incredibly proud of the partnership we have with Surrey County Council and the millions of pounds that have been spent with Surrey businesses and raised for causes that are in Surrey.
"We would love the event to continue in Surrey, but it is appropriate for Surrey County Council to have the consultation with the way the county is run - it is important.
"We hope that Surrey residents look at the benefits that the event brings."