Harewood House near Leeds will next July play host to a three-day long event, Yorkshire’s Festival of Cycling, timed to coincide with the Tour de France’s Grand Départ.
The festival – announced this morning, coincidentally on Yorkshire Day – will take place from Friday 4 July to Sunday 6 July.
The grounds of the 18th Century stately home, built for the Lascelles family who still own it, feature on the route of Stage 1 of the race as it goes from Leeds to Harrogate, and there will be big screens so visitors can catch all the action.
There will also be led rides to specific locations on the opening two stages of the Tour, as well as a cycling expo, catering, secure bike storage, and camping facilities.
The festival’s director, Christopher Newton, said: “The Festival of Cycling will be the hub for the Tour in Yorkshire and the perfect way to witness the race’s unrivalled atmosphere.
“But it’s not just about watching; our visitors can participate in many different events throughout the weekend – all made easy by on-site camping in the magnificent Harewood grounds.”
Besides that, there will also be sportives, including a women-only Cycletta event, which will enable riders to follow the same roads used by the Tour.
Those rides are being organised by Human Race whose director, Nick Rusling, said: “There’s no better way to enjoy the Tour weekend in Yorkshire than to get on your bike and participate.
“With events for everyone on offer, there will be something to choose from no matter what your age or level of experience.”
More information is available on the Festival of Cycling website, where you can also register for updates.
Tour de France race director Christian Prudhomme – pictured above right with David Lascelles, the 8th Earl of Harewood, said: "We just can't wait to come to Yorkshire for the Grand Depart in 2014.
“It's a spectacular region and we hope that fans will come from all over and experience it first hand. With beautiful venues like Harewood House, there will be some incredible places to watch and some great ways to get involved."
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