Simply the best Grand Départ ever

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From: Richard Benford-Miller, Old Dairy Mews, Hyde, Cheshire.

THANK you so much for such a spectacular Grand Départ. As a Yorkshireman by birth and a cyclist and fan for many years, I am so impressed by my home county’s welcome.

Thanks to the organisers of the best Grand Départ ever. Thanks to the volunteer tour makers for their wonderful welcome and helpful nature. Thanks to the event security guys – a difficult job they did with courtesy and a wonderful sense of humour while keeping us safe. Thanks to the Tour organisers, you really got the stages right. Thanks to the teams and riders, it was great to see the Bretagne- Seche support team cars taking photos of us. Thanks to the police, British and French, for their wonderfully unobtrusive presence. It was fun descending Holme Moss with a Gendarme motorbike.

The road controls were absolutely excellent. I experienced no delays on route to Skipton. It was just amazing.

From: Graham Snowdon, Hallam Grange Croft, Sheffield.

AFTER the wonderful, wonderful weekend of the Tour de France, I imagined tens of thousands of French TV viewers watching our beautiful county unfold before their eyes and making a conscious decision to come here for their holidays in 2015.

Hardly a hope, apparently. My French friend tells me: “Most French people stay in France, heading for the mountains or the sea. Most of those who go abroad head for the sun. I’m not sure you’re going to overturn such ingrained habits with just a couple of Tour de France stages.”

Oh well, at least they now know what they’re missing.

From: Bill Whatley, Birmingham.

A BRUMMIE writing to The Yorkshire Post... unheard of I know, but I have to quote the London Evening Standard to you: “Yorkshire was of course a lovely starting point for the Tour De France, but the race takes on a momentous quality once it reaches London. There’s nothing like the backdrop of Big Ben to give an event star quality.”

I can only think in words that are unpublishable. No wonder Scotland wants to find the exit.

From: Brian Parker, Wombwell, Barnsley.

AS a reader of The Yorkshire Post for 40 years after living in both Leeds and Barnsley, I have got to comment on the coverage of your two souvenir specials on Sunday and Monday on the Tour de France.

While the pictures and coverage were top quality as usual, I am disappointed that you favoured West Yorkshire as opposed to South.

From: Keith Jowett, Woodland Rise, Silkstone Common, Barnsley.

I HEARTILY agree with the views of your correspondent, Godfrey Lomas (The Yorkshire Post, July 7) who complained about the mangled commentary of the ITV presenters of the Tour de Yorkshire. Their lack of preparation spoiled my enjoyment of the glorious aerial shots of our beautiful county.

They obviously had crib sheets to refer to, since they had some detailed knowledge of the interiors of many of the churches seen from the air. However, they revealed an apparent lack of knowledge of reading Roman numerals by crediting the dissolution of Kirkstall Abbey to Henry VII, when most schoolchildren will know it was Henry VIII, who was responsible.

Despite these irritants, the shots of familiar landmarks such as the Cow and Calf rocks and the Côte de Blubberhouses, seen for the first time from the air, were a joy and credit goes to the helicopter pilots and cameramen.

From: Raymond Barry, Long Lane, Laytham, York.

WAS I alone in wondering how much research had been done by Sunday’s ITV commentator? Reference to Yorkshire mills being concerned with cotton and frequent mentions of the far-distant Ladybower reservoir made me wonder whether this man was similarly knowledgeable about marathon cycling.

From: Barbara Batten, Shrewsbury.

THE Tour de France: wonderful event, wonderful landscape, wonderful supporters, wonderful weather. Shame about the ITV coverage.

Going by previous experience, I’m sure the BBC commentators would have researched everything meticulously and would have had information of interest to slip in when appropriate, rather than repeating time after time the same old things about the turnout, the looming hazard of the “brick” walls etc.

Hailing from Yorkshire, I cringed at the lack of preparation by the commentators regarding the geography of the route, the history of the Yorkshire Dales, knowledge and mention of which small village was up and coming and the pronunciation of rivers and place names.

From: Paul Kirby, Wetherby.

I NEARLY choked on my Yorkshire pudding when Evan Davis on BBC Radio 4’s flagship Today programme last weekend informed us of a visit to a village “right in the heart of the Dales”. Ooh, I thought, where has he been – Kettlewell, Bainbridge, Hawes or Askrigg perhaps?

My whippet winced, my ferret fainted and my pigeons panicked when he told us it was....Addingham! It ain’t even int’ Yorkshire Dales National Park, let alone in its heart, Mr Evans. Could he not simply have looked at a map? We deserve better.