Minister backs region to capitalise on Tour

Minister for Sport and Tourism Helen Grant on her visit to Benton Park School in Rawdon, Leeds, where she sampled a British Cycling Go-Ride session. Picture by Tony Johnson

Minister for Sport and Tourism Helen Grant on her visit to Benton Park School in Rawdon, Leeds, where she sampled a British Cycling Go-Ride session. Picture by Tony Johnson

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Yorkshire’s high hopes for economic and sporting benefits from hosting Le Tour in July are within reach, Minister for Sport and Tourism Helen Grant claims.

Her comments came in a visit to Benton Park School, in Rawdon, where 30 pupils saddled up to take part in a British Cycling Go-Ride event yesterday.

The school is one of a number in the county to be drawing on the enthusiasm for Le Tour by running a cycling club, setting up inter-school events and bringing two wheels into the curriculum.

Mrs Grant was joined by TDFHUB2014 Ltd chair Sir Rodney Walker and British Cycling president Bob Howden along with Welcome to Yorkshire and Leeds City Council chiefs for an update on Tour preparations.

She said: “It’s got wonderful scenery, beautiful stages, so why wouldn’t people want to come here? And as far as the cycling is concerned I know British Cycling are working very hard to make sure the links are made between the inspiration and the motivation from the event and converting that into getting local people on bikes.”

British Cycling president Mr Howden added: “It’s happening already, the benefits are there, we have signed up with every local authority in Yorkshire to build opportunities.”

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