Harrogate Borough Council reportedly overspent by £50,000 on its inaugural Big Bike Bash in June, but Cllr Richard Cooper hopes it pays off in the long run

A Harrogate councillor hopes the town’s inaugural Big Bike Bash will boost its bid to host a stage at the 2016 Tour de Yorkshire, despite it costing £50,000 more than budgeted.

As part of the celebrations for the first anniversary of the Tour de France Grand Depart, Harrogate Borough Council reportedly overspent on its £85,000 budget to host the mass-participation event on the Stray in June.

The event itself was a success, attracting thousands of people to Montpelier Hill, according to the Ripon Gazette, but cost £135,000 to stage.

Council leader Richard Cooper said: “We originally thought it would cost £85,000, but we had never done anything like this before. We wanted to spend the money on this to make sure everything was right. The extra £50,000 was to dot the I’s and cross the T’s.”

Harrogate missed out on hosting a stage on the inaugural Tour de Yorkshire in May, but Cllr Cooper said the town hopes to welcome the race next year following the success of the Grand Depart where over 300,000 attended the stage one finish.

“We would like to host a stage finish, just like we did with the Tour de France,” he said.

“We have proved big style that we can host big events in the town succesfully. We can do these things, we should be shouting about it, we know we can pull these things off.”

  • Mike Prytherch

    It’s a shame this leaves kids no way of getting to the Bilton Cycleway from Leeds Road side of Harrogate without riding on the roads, it’s short sighted and discourages cycling, I’m sure we want to see kids cycling down the A61, why not paint No Cycling on all the paths in Harrogate

  • Mike Prytherch

    I’ve cycled on these paths for over 20 years, my kids used them to get to the Bilton Cycle path, there is NO WAY I can get there now without cycling on the road, you want my 8 year old cycling on the road, these paths have been used by commuters for years, coming from Leeds Road they are a god send, my facts are straight and I will slag off the council as its narrow minded non-sense, its the usual over reaction of health and safety, you want my 8 year old cycling on the A61 do you ? a Vast majority of cyclists I’ve seen using these go onto the grass to pass walkers, I’ve never seen any issue, I’m not saying that there has never been issues, but a blanket ban is an over kill and does nothing to progress cycling.

  • Keith McArthur

    The no cycling signs are on footpath sections of the Stray.On the wider paths-extended so they are suitable for dual use there are NO No Cycling signs.Before you start slagging off the council,get your facts straight!

  • Mike Prytherch

    Perhaps the councillor should ask why the council has put up No Cycling signs across all parts of the park forcing cyclists onto over crowded and pot holed roads, one minute they want more cycling events, but the next seem to want to stop people cycling