The eighth edition of RideLondon has been cancelled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic ©Getty Images

The 2020 Prudential RideLondon Festival of Cycling has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic after a decision was made by the London authorities.

Originally scheduled for August 15 and 16, it was set to host four mass participation events: RideLondon-Surrey 19, 46 and 100 competitions, all representing the number of miles to cycle, as well as a FreeCycle event that allows cyclists to peddle for free around a seven-mile course in the city centre.

It was also set to host two professional races - the International Cycling Union (UCI) WorldTour Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic and Prudential RideLondon Classique.

Other events included the RideLondon Cycling Show at ExCeL in London and the Brompton World Championship Final.

Will Norman, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan's walking and cycling commissioner said: "RideLondon has been one of the highlights of the capital's event calendar for the last seven years, so it is obviously disappointing that it cannot be staged this year.

"This summer we hope that millions of Londoners will alter their travel habits by making journeys by bike instead of driving or using public transport.

"But it is absolutely the right decision to cancel this year's event to ensure the safety of everyone involved and we all look forward to welcoming RideLondon back again in the near future.

"The Mayor and I would like to thank Prudential, in their final year as title sponsors, for their support over the last seven years."

Event director of Prudential RideLondon, Hugh Brasher said it was a regrettable decision that had to be made.

He said: "We know how disappointing this news will be to the tens of thousands of riders who were hoping to participate in one of the fantastic events in the world's greatest festival of cycling, for the thousands of charities that would have benefited from fundraising and for the world's best professional cyclists who love racing on the streets of London and Surrey.

"But I am sure everyone will understand why this decision has been made.

"All entrants to the events will have their race fee refunded, while organisers will look to host a different way of celebrating the scheduled weekend."

Organisers have also said they will look further into the future of the event.

Brasher added: "2021 will be the first year of a new contract to deliver RideLondon and, with the current unknowns about the short-term future for mass participation events and the importance of inspiring as many people as possible to cycle more often, we're taking the opportunity to fully review the format and timing of the event over the next few months."

Over the past seven years, RideLondon has attracted 100,000 riders over its seven different events.

Khan recently announced that Central London will become a car-free zone with an increase wanted on walking and cycling.

It is one of many sporting events in the United Kingdom to be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

There have been more than 248,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United Kingdom to date, resulting in the deaths of over 35,700 people.