‘Sir Gary Verity Way’ bypass for Harrogate?

Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire.
Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire.

He’s won the admiration of the organisers of the Tour de France.

He’s highly regarded across Yorkshire and been knighted by The Queen for his achievements .
But Sir Gary Verity may be about to receive, perhaps, his greatest accolade yet - a road named after him in Harrogate.
The man behind the idea, Bernard Higgins, believes naming part of Harrogate’s southern bypass the ‘Sir Gary Verity Way’ would make perfect sense.
He argues without the efforts of the chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, the world’s greatest cyclists would never have raced through the town in that heady days in 2014.
Bernard said: “Sir Gary Verity brought the Tour de France to Yorkshire in 2014 and he has established the Tour de Yorkshire as it approaches its third year.
“These events put Yorkshire on the global map as well as give huge exposure to Harrogate, Knaresborough and the surrounding District. The financial input and benefits to our local economy has been enormous.”
Bernard has already approached Harrogate Borough Council for support for his idea. He’s even contacted the council’s chief executive, Wallace Sampson.
It’s not the first time Bernard has called for a Harrogate road to be named.
Bernard is also a leading member of the Blind Jack Committee which recently received the council’s backing in its bid to name another part of the same bypass after Knaresborough road-building legend Blind Jack to mark the 300th anniversary of his birth.
Bernard said: “In a few weeks time the Tour de Yorkshire will also pass through our district during Stage Two.
“Parts of the roadways that John Metcalf originally built will be cycled over by the Peloton. This was not lost on Sir Gary when the routes were being planned.”
Bernard also said he did not intend to make a habit of naming roads after local heroes. He simply thinks it’s high time Sir Gary Verity’s achievements were recognised closer to home.
Bernard said: “I attended a Welcome To Yorkshire event ‘T17’ in York recently.
“As I sat in the theatre listening to speakers and invited guests, as well as watching video of past and planned events, it suddenly dawned on me that we were all there because of one man. Sir Gary Verity.
“We had royalty, the Prime Minister and senior politicians, sporting Legends and many more descend on Harrogate in 2014. This was all due to Sir Gary Verity’s courage, perseverance and charm.”