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Great Yarmouth seafront gears up to welcome 15,000 motorcyclists for Wheels Festival

Great Yarmouth Wheels Festival

Great Yarmouth seafront is gearing up to welcome 15,000 motorcyclists as part of the two-day Great Yarmouth Wheels Festival in July, creating a spectacle along the Golden Mile while raising funds for the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

The free festival, taking place on Saturday 6 July and Sunday 7 July, is organised by Great Yarmouth Borough Council with sponsorship from individual seafront businesses, and the Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area company. In its fifth year, the festival is set to draw families and vehicle enthusiasts to the seafront for an action-packed weekend.

This year’s expanded event will see a larger area of the seafront lined with even more prestige, classic and bespoke cars, large commercial vehicles and other special activities and entertainment. The big headline attractions and further details will be announced over the coming weeks.

A highlight will be on the Saturday, when an estimated 15,000 motorcyclists are set to visit the festival, arriving from 10am for On the Throttle’s Great Yarmouth Motorcycle Take Over. Then on the Sunday afternoon, Centre 81 Classic Car and Bike Rally will parade along the seafront for judging by the mayor at the Sealife Centre Gardens.

The borough council has again worked closely with Norfolk County Council, as highways authority, and the organisers of these authorised visits, to ensure they happen in a co-ordinated way, which reduces the impact on other road users, while still capturing the huge economic benefits that thousands of extra visitors bring.

This year, motorcyclists planning to access and park within the festival site along the Golden Mile are asked to make a voluntary donation of £2 per bike, which will go towards the running of the festival and the East Anglian Air Ambulance. Bikers are encouraged to make their donation online in advance to get a fast lane entry sticker for parking.

One of the most anticipated motorcycle attractions on Saturday will be Seastar Superbikes, who will be bringing the Ducati and Kawasaki Norwich Roadshow and will be located close to the Sealife Centre Gardens. They will have a mobile dyno “rolling road” enabling motorcyclists to test the performance of their bikes, and will also be running escorted Ducati ride-outs for those who pre-book by calling 01508 471919 or emailing sales@seastarsuperbikes.co.uk.

New for 2019, there will be a drop-off point for helmets and leathers at the Marina Centre Café, as well as extra stalls selling motorcycle parts, accessories and other merchandise, with confirmed traders including Flint Motorcycles, Motus Bikewear and Clean My Ride.

The festival is brought to you by Great Yarmouth Borough Council in conjunction with the Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area, Joyland and the American Diner, On the Throttle, plus other seafront businesses.

Andy McSweeny, of the Great Yarmouth-based social media forum On the Throttle, said: “The Takeover, as part of the Wheels Festival, is an annual highlight for motorcyclists and this year we’re hoping to welcome a record 15,000 bikers for the Motorcycle Takeover on July 6, raising funds for the East Anglian Air Ambulance and for the sustainable running of the festival.

“Please remember to make your £2 donation, ideally in advance online, to get your fast lane entry sticker. The £2 donation per bike allows visitors to access and park their bike within the festival site along the Golden Mile.”

Cllr Paul Hammond, vice chairman of the economic development committee, said: “Wheels is a major highlight in our events calendar, which boosts visitor numbers and spend, and promotes our borough as a vibrant place to live, work and visit. This year, we’re gearing up for an even bigger festival, bringing fun for everyone over two action-packed days, centred around the spectacle of 15,000 visiting motorcyclists on the Saturday and the car and bike rally on the Sunday.”

Alan Carr, chief executive of the Great Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area (GYTABIA), said: “The Wheels Festival brings a real buzz to the Golden Mile and the many thousands of people it attracts are good for the town and great for business. This year’s festival looks like being bigger than ever and GYTABIA is delighted to be able to support it.”

Michael Cole, of Joyland and the American Diner, said: “We are very excited to be sponsoring Wheels again this year. This free festival is set to be bigger and better than ever, promising a great weekend for families and enthusiasts alike while boosting trade right along the seafront.”

The festival will take place from 10am to 6pm on the Saturday and 10am to 4pm on the Sunday. For more information and to enquire about a trade stall, visit www.gywheelsfestival.co.uk

Great Yarmouth Wheels Festival

Highways arrangements

Marine Parade, between the junctions with North Drive at Britannia Pier and the Kings Road roundabout, will be closed to traffic between 7am and 11pm on the Saturday and until 7pm on the Sunday, with a clear signed diversion in place.

There will be no direct vehicular access to Marine Parade from Lancaster Road, York Road, Trafalgar Road, Trafalgar Square and Britannia Road. The taxi and coach stops along North Drive will not be affected. Motorcyclists will be routed onto Marine Parade via Trafalgar Road, Kings Road and St Peter’s Road.

The car parks at St Nicholas (limited spaces), North Drive, Euston Road and in the town centre will remain open for the public. However, the car parks at Anchor Gardens, Marina Centre North and South, and Jetty North, plus the closed roadway of Marine Parade including the landau lane, will be designated parking zones for the motorcyclists and Wheels exhibitors, who will be guided by traffic marshals. Access along the whole length of Marine Parade will be maintained for pedestrians and emergency vehicles.

Mobile Dyno Rolling Road