As the news that 101st Tour de France is coming to the Harrogate district has been welcomed by local businesses, councillors and cycling fans, Councillor Anthony Alton, the Leader of Harrogate Borough Council, has pledged his council’s support.
He added: “Welcome to Yorkshire have done a fantastic job in winning this bid for Leeds and the wider region and, of course, locally we are all very excited that Yorkshire and, particularly the Harrogate district, has been chosen for the Grand Départ of the world’s largest annual sporting event.
“This is the first time in the Tour de France history that it has been brought to northern England. We will all have a big part to play in making sure it runs smoothly for the organisers, the participants and spectators. This is going to be a huge boost for tourism for Yorkshire.
“Yorkshire has a lot to offer the Tour de France and for us the event will provide the opportunity to generate significant economic benefit for the UK generally and the Harrogate district and Yorkshire specifically. It has already attracted major publicity and we can expect large numbers of day and staying visitors during the event and in the longer-term.”
Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “The routes of the Grand Depart will showcase some of Yorkshire’s iconic cycling climbs and the county’s stunning land and cityscapes. The peloton will be technically tested as they tackle some challenging terrain in what are sure to be two exhilarating days of racing in the county. The British public’s response since the news broke that the 2014 Grand Départ would be hosted in Yorkshire has been overwhelming and I am sure the route announcements will encourage even more people to come to the county to experience for themselves the phenomenon that is Le Tour.
“This is Yorkshire’s moment to shine – the world’s largest annual sporting event is coming to our county – not Barcelona, not Florence, not Venice – Yorkshire!”