Doncaster turns out in force for Tour de Yorkshire

Gazing down from a balcony from a town house in South Parade in the heat of the May sun, they could have been on the French Riviera.

But the flags next to the two men as they gazed down at the street was not a French Tricoleur - it was the the white rose on a blue background that has been adopted as the flag of Yorkshire.

Lakeide Primary School pupils Lily Heap, 10, Imogen Jolly, 10, Inaaya Waqar, nine, and Francis Nickson, at the Tour de Yorkshire in Doncaster with their school.

Lakeide Primary School pupils Lily Heap, 10, Imogen Jolly, 10, Inaaya Waqar, nine, and Francis Nickson, at the Tour de Yorkshire in Doncaster with their school.

This was not San Tropez - this was Doncaster.

Businesses along the route had made the most of the Tour. Many had put seats and tables outside on the pavement, adding to a cafe culture feel on the streets. Street vendors sprang up along the street selling Yorkshire flags.

Fans lined the route as it passed through Doncaster, entering into the borough at Sykehouse, and finishing in the town centre at South Parade

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Families and cycling fans enjoyed the atmosphere at a specially created fan zone on Town Fields. Between races some watched the action on giant screens, while others sat on the grass in the sun drinking and eating picnics.

Nicola Mawton, David Wilson, Laura Stevenson and Lewis Mawer at the tour de Yorkshire fanzone

Nicola Mawton, David Wilson, Laura Stevenson and Lewis Mawer at the tour de Yorkshire fanzone

Friends Laura Stevenson and Nicola Mawton had made a day of the tour, taking their young sons with them.

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Treating her three-year-old son, Lewis Mawer, to a freshly created balloon animal, Laura, aged 32, from Armthorpe, described the trip as an off-the-cuff decision. "The weather made us decide to come down," she said. "We got here just after the women's race had finished, but we're in plenty of time for the men's race," she added.

"Whoever wins, its been exciting, and the atmosphere is what has made it. Everyone is in such good spirits.

"We've watched some of the children doing time trials as part of the build up, and done the the hook a duck," added Nicola, aged 36, from Kirk Sandall, who had brought her 23 month son, David Wilson, with her as they made their way around the fan zone.

Among those watching the children's time trials were a group of pupils from Lakeside Primary School, on Sandy Lane.

They had made the visit to watch two of their school pals take part. A party of 45 year five pupils were there from the school. They were among a number of schools which had taken the tour under their wing.

Teacher Alex Westbrook said: "We saw them take part in their race, and they were really fast, although we don't know who was the fastest. It was exciting for us to see them take part."