An artistic project to welcome the Tour de France to Pool-in-Wharfedale will be completed this month after overcoming a funding crisis.
The organisers of Banners Over Pool feared the worst when they were told that their £10,000 funding bid had been rejected. But the scheme, which will display 20 double-sided signs sporting designs by local children, was put back on track when Leeds Inspired agreed to cover the costs.
Local artists Karen and Tony van de Bospoort have helped schoolchildren, each of whom will appear on their banner riding a bike, create 40 colourful images.
The results, due to be printed next week, will be attached to lampposts along the Tour’s route through the village.
Karen said: “The whole community of Pool is very proud that our village has been chosen as one of five spectator zones along the Grand Depart stage one route.
“Something really dynamic was needed to demonstrate that the world’s biggest cycle race was passing through.
“This is why we came up with an idea that not only involves the community but creates a lasting legacy for all to see – 20 giant, double-sided banners featuring 40 children and their artwork fixed to lamp posts along the route.”
Three artwork sessions with pupils at Pool C of E Primary were held during school holidays. The artists were helped at the sessions by fellow project organiser and Pool Parish Councillor, Richard Parker.
Karen said: “The children were encouraged to be as creative as possible in their drawings to replace the front wheel of a bicycle.
“We didn’t want to restrict their creativity; whatever they drew would be paired with a comment that could be related to a great day in Pool.
“Every child was also photographed, using the magic of ‘green screen’, as if sitting on a real bike.”
The van de Bospoorts put all the different components together for each design.
Karen added: “As this has been a community project from the beginning, we are organising a coach to take the children to view their banners being printed.”
The couple would like to thank everyone involved in the project especially Coun Parker.