Traders are hoping business will be booming as thousands of people are expected to pack into small villages to experience the Tour de France.

Parish councils, shops, pubs and cafés all hope to benefit as the world’s top riders race through the district before they leave Britain for mainland Europe.

The famous race will pass through Finchingfield, Wethersfield, Shalford, Great Saling and Rayne on Monday, July 7.

The 99-mile stage will start in Cambridge and end on The Mall in London.

Up to 10,000 spectators are expected to line the streets of Rayne.

See this week's Braintree and Witham Times for an in-depth look at the Tour de France coming to the district.