Revealed: £250k cost for Harrogate to host Tour de Yorkshire stage

Marcel Kittell wins the first stage of the 2014 Tour de France in Harrogate from Peter Sagan after Mark Cavendish crashed at the bottom of Parliament Street.  5 July 2014. Picture Bruce Rollinson

Marcel Kittell wins the first stage of the 2014 Tour de France in Harrogate from Peter Sagan after Mark Cavendish crashed at the bottom of Parliament Street. 5 July 2014. Picture Bruce Rollinson

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Harrogate Borough Council (HBC) is considering spending £250k to host a Stage of the Tour De Yorkshire 2017.

In a report presented to the Cabinet on March 24, councillors discussed paying £100k to meet the hosting fee and a further £150k for associated HBC event management costs.

Last year, the council committed in principle to hosting a Stage Finish of the Tour and, in December, it was confirmed Harrogate would feature as a 2017 Stage Host.

The report outlined that £335,000 was needed for ‘major events’ during 2016-18, which also includes Knaresborough Water Carnival 2017 and Yorkshire Day 2018.

The Cabinet are now discussing using £220,000 from corporate underspend to pay for the events as well as the remaining £115,710 in the Major Events Reserve.

The council said it expects £5 to £7 million to be generated from visitor spend by hosting the event with a further £300k to £500k from team media and organisational spend.

Lois Toyne, HBC’s head of Culture, Tourism and Sports used the 2014 Grand Depart in as an example of the benefits of hosting major events.

She said: “There is no doubt that major events can have a positive economic, community and social impact.

“The arrival of the Tour de France in the district in 2014 saw communities working together to support the event, which raised the profile of the district considerably on the world stage and had a significant impact on the economy generating approximately £19 million.

“At a recent Cabinet meeting members agreed a programme of events to be supported by the council over the next two years – either financially or through the assistance of council officers.”

The Cabinet will make their decision on funding for the event once the council’s 2015/16 end position is confirmed.

If confirmed, the Tour de Yorkshire will be the third cycling event held in the town following the 2014 Tour de France and the Big Bike Bash the following year.

The council has already approved £10k for this year’s Tour de Yorkshire route which includes a section through the Harrogate district.

Stray could be used for Le Tour

The Stray could again be used as a spectator hub or fan park during the 2017 Tour de Yorkshire.

As in 2014, the council has now approached the Secretary for Communities and Local Government for temporary relaxation of the Stray Act.

A consultation, which can be found on the council’s website, has been launched and will run to May 19.