WOMEN will cycle through Oxfordshire's streets next month for the OVO Energy Women's Tour and communities and local businesses are gearing up for the event.

A carnival atmosphere is expected along the route between Henley-on-Thames and Blenheim Palace with cycling fans visiting the county to watch the race.

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Councils are encouraging local businesses to join in the fun and showcase their town or village while generating additional business for restaurants, bars, hotels and shops.

They suggest having 'best dressed shop window' competitions and cycling-themed displays.

A similar bike race in Warwickshire last year gave local businesses a £2 million economic boost.

One of the towns that will be embracing the race is Faringdon. 

It will be turning the town pink by encouraging people to dress in pink, wave pink banners and flags, bake pink cakes and fly pink kites.

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Sjoerd Vogt, from Farcycles and Chair of the Faringdon Pink Pigeon Trust, said: "The OVO Energy Women’s Tour is the biggest event to hit Faringdon this century so naturally we want to celebrate. 

"Our infant and junior schools will be cheering on the race and we want local people to think ‘Pink, Pink, Pink’ and get ready for the glorious 12th.”