...and saluting our children of courage
THE WHEEL of good fortune continues to turn in Yorkshire’s favour after Leeds lived up to its promise and staged the greatest ever Grand Départ in the 101-year history of the Tour de France.
Not only did the race exceed all expectations – and create iconic imagery which was beamed to a global audience – but it was also an unprecedented success story from an economic standpoint.
It follows confirmation that the Tour generated £150m for the local economy – £50m more than the initial estimate and further vindication of the £27m that it cost to stage three days of world class cycling in Britain.
Where councils’ costs exceeded budget forecasts they can now be reimbursed for their contribution to a sporting event which saw 2.8 million spectators line the region’s roads. If anyone doubted the wisdom of hosting the Tour, these figures are final confirmation that such fears were unfounded.
It would also be remiss not to pay tribute to everyone who made this event possible from Welcome to Yorkshire supremo Gary Verity’s decision to bring the Tour here to the volunteers who ensured that the race ran like clockwork.
It shows what is possible when the whole county pulls together – next May’s inaugural Tour of Yorkshire will be a fitting legacy and show, once again, how cycling can change lives for the better.
Shining a light on our children of courage
EVERY year the Yorkshire Children of Courage Awards highlight some truly remarkable young people in Leeds.
Children like nine-year-old Evie Addelman who since first being diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease has said she wants to help other people with the disease and has raised more than £3,00 to do so.
And Jacob Cassidy, who has helped look after his mum, who has epilepsy, since he was seven years old.
Young people often get a bad press, which is why these awards are so important.
That and the fact that they put adults’ often petty problems into some much-needed perspective.