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RESIDENTS in Hadleigh could win the race for the last remaining Olympic tickets by being bumped to the front of the queue.

Castle Point Council has got 300 tickets to sell for the mountain bike event at Hadleigh Farm. It is offering them to people living in five streets near the Olympic site to buy the tickets at face value.

The council hopes the gesture will compensate people for the disruption they face during the event and, if councillors approve the scheme, residents of Chapel Lane, Castle Lane, Park Chase, Seaview Terrace and Mount Zion will be able to get their hands on the tickets.

Sally Burton, 34, and her son Alfie Batchelor, 4, of Chapel Lane, Hadleigh, said it was a boost to those living near the site.

Sally said: “I did not apply for any tickets before because I just did not think I had a chance of getting any, but if we have the chance to buy exclusive tickets I will definitely try.

“It is just going to be chaos around here for us, so I think it is nice of the council to at least try to give us something in the way of compensation.”

About 40,000 spectators are expected to attend races at Hadleigh Farm on August 11 and 12.

Parking will be restricted in Castle Lane, Chapel Lane and Park Chase before and during the event, and delays and access restrictions are expected in Seaview Terrace and Mount Zion, where the spectators’ entrance will be installed.

Other streets will be affected by heavy traffic on event days, but a council spokesman said the authority had chosen to concentrate on the people most severely impacted.

He added: “Residential roads on the access routes to the venue either affected by parking suspensions during the event periods or located closest to the spectator entrance, where alternative access arrangements will be implemented and delays may occur, will be the most severely affected by the transport plans.

“All residents living in these roads will receive an official letter from the council offering them the opportunity to purchase up to two tickets per property.”

The council has 200 tickets for each day and the additional 100 tickets would be made available to Castle Point Council staff, who would be able to buy them at face value and must sign a declaration saying they won’t transfer them to anyone else.

The authority bought the tickets, costing £16,500, from the Government’s department for culture, media and sport, through a scheme enabling councils in areas hosting events to get extra tickets.

The council’s cabinet was scheduled to discuss whether to approve the ticket scheme last night.