Green light for Tour de Yorkshire finish but Harrogate warned over Stray law

HARROGATE COUNCIL has been warned the law may need to be changed if it wants to regularly use The Stray to host major events.

Harrogate hosted the finish of stage on of the 2014 Tour de France
Harrogate hosted the finish of stage on of the 2014 Tour de France

The Government has agreed to use the authority it has to suspend parts of a law passed in 1985 to protect The Stray so that the land can be used as part of next year’s Tour de Yorkshire cycle race.

A similar move was needed when Harrogate hosted the finish of the opening stage of the 2014 Tour de France.

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The Government document confirming it will suspend parts of The Harrogate Stray Act for the event next year warns a “better long term and predictable solution” would be a review of the law if the council wants the right to host “larger sporting and entertainment” events.

It says future similar requests “may not necessarily be granted”.

A consultation was launched on the council’s request for The Stray’s protection to be temporarily suspended.

Of the 21 responses received, six opposed the move on the grounds of potential damage, the impact on local businesses, disruption to transport and the use of the land for commercial gain.

Other concerns included the desire for guarantees that The Stray would be restored following the event and worries that a precedent was being set over how the land can be used.

The Harrogate Chamber of Commerce and Stray Defence Association were among the organisations expressing support for the event.

The Tour de Yorkshire 2017 will run from April 29 to May 1.