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Volunteers flock to be Wharfedale's ‘Le Tourmakers’ for Tour de France
3:35pm Thursday 28th February 2013 in Local news
Over 1,000 local people have volunteered to become “Le Tourmakers” when the Tour de France passes through Yorkshire next summer.
Last month it was announced that the Yorkshire leg of the world famous cycle race will set off in Leeds and take in Otley, Ilkley, Skipton, Keighley, and Silsden on the weekend of July 5 and 6.
It will bring hundreds of people involved in the various teams as well as thousands of spectators.
To cope with the huge undertaking, local tourism group Welcome To Yorkshire asked for volunteers, who would be called “Le Tourmakers” to get involved. And this week it was announced that more than 1,000 people have put their names forward.
People can still sign up to volunteer, and will find out if they will be a part of the biggest sporting event in Yorkshire history closer to the date of the race.
Coun Andrew Thornton, Executive Member for Sport on Bradford Council, said: “We are bowled over by the number of volunteers who have already stepped forward to offer support for this event.
“It demonstrates the amount of local interest in cycling and sport in general, as we currently have a high level of volunteering in sports clubs across the district.
“It appears that the spirit of the Olympics is continuing to benefit local sports. This event will also boost the region’s economy by bringing in more visitors.”
Bradford Council invested over £300,000 towards Yorkshire’s successful bid to host the Grand Depart, and in the coming year’s budget have set aside an additional £130,000 for district wide events to mark the Tour.
Jonathan Riley, from Ilkley Cycling Club, says cycling’s local profile was at an all time high, and a number of the club’s members have volunteered to be a part of the once in a lifetime experience.
He added: “Recent weeks have confirmed the area’s passion for the biggest sporting occasions.
“The tour will pass through some of the finest and proudest cycling country within the district on both days, so it’s no surprise that there’s been such a huge level of interest here in being part of the Tourmaker team.”