Bristol, home of our title sponsor OVO Energy, will host the Stage Three on Tuesday 4 September. This has all the ingredients to be a thriller: it’s a short, sharp, out-and-back leg into the North Somerset hills, including the climb of Cheddar Gorge.

The finish atop Clifton Down is fast becoming a Tour of Britain icon: in 2014 Michal Kwiatkowski timed his attack perfectly to take the stage win and move into the race lead. The race’s last visit to the city came in 2016, during which Grand Tour victor Tony Martin and Rohan Dennis claimed wins during a split time trial/road race stage.

Host venue for the third time

Bristol has so many stories to tell. Surrounded by beautiful countryside, this cosmopolitan inland harbour city has its own unique identity and independent spirit. The UK’s first European Green Capital, Bristol is a city that is proud to be different.

A place of innovation, artists and activists, its streets are alive with a colourful creative culture that can be experienced in everything from food to film.

The city is full of museums, galleries and family attractions and its massive events programme will leave you in no doubt that this is a city that likes to have fun. There are food festivals, music festivals, music and food festivals combined plus celebrations of film, balloons, boats, heritage, arts, comedy, cocktails, green living, fair trade and nature.

There are some real ‘not to be missed’ sights such as Clifton Suspension Bridge, designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel in the 19th century and Brunel’s ss Great Britain, now an internationally renowned museum and enclosed in the dock where she was originally launched almost 175 years ago.

The young and young at heart will love Bristol Zoo Gardens, Bristol Aquarium and At-Bristol Science Centre, plus museums such as M Shed (telling the story of the city through its people and places) and Bristol Museum and Art Gallery have a fascinating programme of events and exhibitions that will bring you back time and time again.

With centres for the contemporary arts Arnolfini and Spike Island offering world class experiences and the wonderful Royal West of England Academy hosting an incredible year round programme, culture lovers will be spoilt for choice. You can’t miss Bristol’s ever-evolving street art scene, made famous by the elusive graffiti artist Banksy whose original murals can be seen around the city. It’s definitely worth taking one of the tours led by the artists themselves to discover more about the evolution of street art and music in the city.

And what music it is. Bristol is admired for its diverse music scene, from the latest emerging talent to classical concerts and a buzzy jazz and folk scene, there are some great places to catch the latest bands and infamous venues to discover the next big thing. Nightlife boasts retro nightclubs, live music bars, friendly pubs, sophisticated cocktail lounges, underground clubs and popular gig nights. There is also a daily line-up of live entertainment at the Bristol Hippodrome, St Georges, Tobacco Factory Theatres and the Bristol Old Vic.