“This is really not the day to try and drive across south-west London.”

That was the warning from organisers of the Olympic road cycling test event on Sunday, August 14, which will see about 150 riders race through Richmond Park, Twickenham, Teddington, Bushy Park and Hampton Court.

Transport for London (TfL) has urged residents to plan ahead any journeys they need to make on the day, as it prepares for the biggest road closure in its history.

Leon Daniels, managing director of surface transport at TfL, said: “If you must drive in that area the likelihood is you will get stuck somewhere.”

Residents in Teddington will be surrounded by a loop of the course, which runs down Waldegrave Road, between 6am and 11.30am, with only a limited number of pedestrians being allowed to cross the barriers at designated points. Organisers have already placed warnings about temporary parking restrictions on cars.

Councillor Stephen Knight, leader of Richmond’s Liberal Democrat group, said he was happy the 140km event, which will attract thousands of spectators, was running through the borough.

But the Teddington councillor added: “There has to be some provision for the emergency services and people in essential jobs. No doubt that will all be thought through, but I think the rest of us will have to put up with a considerable amount of congestion.

“I think the best advice to people is to stay at home on that Sunday.”

Brian Holder, leader of the Teddington Society’s roads and transport group, said only a small number of people who believed they would be “imprisoned in their houses” had complained.

He said: “As far as we are concerned the Teddington Society supports the race, we believe it’s very important for the borough and a chance to show the borough off.”

Simon Lillistone, cycling manager at the London 2012 organising committee (Locog), said the trial will be a “critical event” as part of its preparations for the real thing next year.

Riders from 26 different teams, including Great Britain, Australia, USA and France, will take part in what will be their only opportunity to try the course under race conditions.

For more information, visit tfl.gov.uk/gettingaround/20027.aspx.

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