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‘Plan ahead’ warning as Leeds Tour de France road closures unveiled

A firework celebration greeted the original announcement that the Tour de France was coming to Leeds. Picture Bruce Rollinson

A firework celebration greeted the original announcement that the Tour de France was coming to Leeds. Picture Bruce Rollinson

Transport plans aimed at keeping Leeds moving when the Tour de France departs from The Headrow on July 5 have been released today.

Leeds City Council is calling on residents to plan ahead after it announced that roads on or connected to stage one in Leeds will be closed for at least eight hours on race day, with most expected to shut from 7am to 3pm.

Vehicle access to the city centre will be restricted, while the Tour infrastructure including the publicity caravan of vehicles, spectators and the race itself moves in and out of the city.

The plans, which have been put together with help from emergency services, mean the route must be cleared of all public vehicles prior to the closures.

Coun Lucinda Yeadon, the council’s lead member for leisure, said every effort is being made to minimise disruption. She said: “We want everyone to start planning now how they can make the absolute most of it.”

The closures follow the route of stage one, which starts on The Headrow and covers portions of Eastgate, Regent Street, Scott Hall Road, Harrogate Road, the A659 from Harewood, following Otley Road and Arthington Lane through Pool-in-Wharfedale and on to Otley before heading out of the district through Ilkley. Through traffic will not be permitted during the closures, though there will be very limited access from the Leeds Inner Ring Road.

A revised bus timetable and park and ride service will be released nearer to the event and pedestrians will be able to cross certain areas at designated points on the day.

Meanwhile the 30,000 people who applied to become Tour Makers are now being asked to fill in a final application. The volunteer officials will greet visitors and marshall parts of the three UK stages.

Asda has committed to the recruitment and clothing of the volunteers and will provide the final volunteer force with a Tour Maker uniform exclusively designed by its clothing brand George.

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “We have had a massive response from the public since we announced the Tour was coming and it shows there is a huge public appetite to get involved in this momentous event.”

Leeds City Council has written to all residents and businesses directly impacted by the stage one route, while launching a dedicated Tour-related email alert account and area of its website.

Visit www.leeds.gov.uk/granddepartleeds for Tour details or email granddepartleeds@leeds.gov.uk for regular council Tour updates.

 

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