Corrie and Emmerdale soap stars ride Tour route ahead of Grand Depart

Celebs rode from the Rovers Return to the Woolpack

With the Tour de France beginning later this week, several soap stars have been getting out on their bikes to join in the fun.

As part of ITV's Local Heroes campaign, which encourages volunteering in local sport, Coronation Street's Colson Smith and Emmerdale's Nicola Wheeler, Gaynor Faye, James Hooton and Jamie Shelton cycled part of the Grand Départ's route.

The event involved some 60 miles of cycling from Manchester's Media City (where Corrie is filmed) to the Yorkshire village of Eccup, home of Emmerdale and just three miles from the ceremonial start of this year's Tour de France and Yorkshire's Festival of Cycling.

The event was dubbed the 'Tour de ITV' as the stars from the box rode from the Rover's Return pub in Weatherfield, to Emmerdale Village's Woolpack pub, with volunteers from the London 2012 legacy charity, Join In, helping to run the fun sportive on the day.

David Moorcroft, director of sport at Join In, said: “Huge thank you to all of the riders and volunteers who took part in Tour de ITV. The turnout exceeded expectations and we’re very grateful for the work and time that the local communities provided throughout the event. Without them, Tour de ITV and similar sports events would not be possible.”

Gregor is BikeRadar's Beginners and Family section editor after leading a cycling heavy youth and regularly clocking up more than 34 miles on the ride to work each day. He's interested in the lighter side of cycling, such as commuting, children's bikes and the occasional short sportive. He also helps to keep BikeRadar's forum in check, and can often be found joining in conversation threads on how to step chafing and the like.

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