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Tour de France will bring in 'millions of pounds'
The Yorkshire leg of the Tour de France will cost Bradford Council £731,000, but is expected to bring millions of pounds into the district.
For the first time since January’s announcement that the Tour would pass through Ilkley, Addingham and various other towns and villages on July 5 and 6 next year, the Council has announced how much the taxpayer will have to pay to fund the race.
The figure includes the already announced £350,000 paid towards tourism group Welcome To Yorkshire’s successful bid to bring the international race to the district, £200,000 for highway repairs along the route and £151,205 towards managing the race.
The remainder of the cost is made up by a £5,000 contribution to York Council, which is developing a cycle strategy that could see bikes for hire across Yorkshire’s streets and £25,000 towards tourism costs.
Money will come from a reserve of £330,000 from the 2013 budget, and a previously approved one-off £130,000 budget designated to the race earlier this year.
The remainder will come from the Council’s contingency fund.
At a meeting of the Executive next Tuesday, Labour councillors who run the authority will be asked to approve setting aside the extra money to pay for the costs and agree to assign Council staff to work on the Tour where necessary.
A report detailing the costs says: “The delivery team are working to ensure value for money on all aspects of the delivery and there is no appetite nor resource from any partner to support overspend.”
The Government is providing the council with £221,000 for staffing and volunteering costs.
In total the race will cost £20,975,979 – shared between various councils and organisations.
It is hoped Le Tour will attract one million visitors a day, and generate even more than the last time the race came to the UK – in 2007 when a London leg generated £88 million.
Councillor Andrew Thornton, executive member for environment, sport and sustainability, said: “This is the greatest annual sporting event in the world and it is essential that both the competitors and spectators have the best possible experience.
“We must grasp this opportunity to show the world the glorious countryside Yorkshire has to offer and secure a positive impact to boost local tourism and business.”
Conservative councillors had recently criticised the council for not being more open over the impact of the race on taxpayers.
After hearing the latest figures, Councillor Glen Miller, Conservative group leader said: “I am pleased that we now have some clarification regarding how the cost and benefits of the Tour de France stack up from a Bradford perspective.
“The report’s assumption that the benefits to Yorkshire from the Tour’s visit will surpass what was generated by the Tour’s visit to London in 2007 looks attractive when compared with Bradford’s contribution, though exactly how many of the millions will be spent in Bradford district remains to be seen.
“Overall it looks as though the event will provide a healthy boost to local economies in relation to the cost.”
The executive meeting takes place at Bradford City Hall next Tuesday at 10.20am.
A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said it was still calculating how much the event will cost to police.
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