Grand Depart fan guide: Calderdale

Calderdale is home to the 'longest continuous incline in England'. Cragg Vale will be a feature of the Yorkshire Grand Depart stage two of the 2014 Tour de France on Sunday July 6. Picture Bruce Rollinson.
Calderdale is home to the 'longest continuous incline in England'. Cragg Vale will be a feature of the Yorkshire Grand Depart stage two of the 2014 Tour de France on Sunday July 6. Picture Bruce Rollinson.
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The wheels are in motion for some spectacular sights and sounds when the Tour de France comes to Calderdale.

To celebrate the arrival of the Grand Depart the region is hosting galas, camp sites and spectator hubs along the route where visitors can watch the race, which is expected to pass through the area on Sunday July 6 at around 2.30pm.

Mytholmroyd Gala promises to be the biggest of all events held on the Grand Depart weekend of July 5 and 6.

Held at Burnley Road Academy playing fields, Todmorden, the fun starts on Friday night with live music and entertainment before staging an M-Factor singing contest on Saturday night and screening the race on a large TV on Sunday.

There will be other spectator hubs at Bramche Square, Todmorden, Calder Holmes Park, Hebden Bridge, Mill Fold Park, Ripponden, The Fleece, Ripponden, and Elland Cricket Ground, Elland.

The cricket ground will host one of numerous camp-sites that weekend, as well as Rochdale Road and Southowram.

There are 20,000 visitors expected to converge on Ripponden Bank, with 160,000 extra visitors expected to come to Calderdale overall.

Pubs and hotels on the route have also taken advantage of the world famous event coming to town and the fact that Calderdale is home to Cragg Vale – the longest continuous incline in England – which features in the stage two route.

The Fleece Inn, Ripponden, is erecting a grandstand on the day with a giant screen to watch the race before and after it goes by, while the Cedar Court Hotel, Ainley Top, Huddersfield, is hosting a family fun day.

Away from race day, there are some eclectic exhibitions of bike-related art in Calderdale to tie-in with the Tour de France.

A combination of historical bike memorabilia and contemporary cycling paraphernalia will be on show in A Century of Cycling, which runs at Bankfield Museum from June 7 to August 9.

Highlights include bikes ranging from the 1930s to the 1980s and an interactive experience of the Tour de France route in Calderdale using exercise bikes.

The Harrison Lord Gallery in Brighouse is also putting the Grand Depart on the map with a selection of paintings by artists who have been inspired by the race.

Artists on show include Michelle Campbell, Roger Simpson, Paul Shipley, Jane O’Neill, Tony Noble, Andy Farr, Martin Cowton, Christine Evans and Alex Tomlinson.

Jeffrey Andrews, senior education officer at Bankfield Museum, said: “It’s a fantastic for Yorkshire and we’re trying to galvanise the celebrations and look at why Calderdale is such a great place to visit at the same time.

“We’re trying to bring together historical material with more contemporary items.

“We’ll have Edwardian outfits to show the way people dressed 100 years ago is so different from now when people go cycling.

“Pedal Sport are also lending us some state-of-the-art bikes, which we’re really grateful for. We couldn’t have done the exhibition without their help.”

The main hall will feature 14 bikes running chronologically from the 1930s up to the 1980s.

Historical and contemporary jerseys will be placed around the gallery showing how design has developed over the last century.

The temporary exhibition space will house three exercise bikes placed in front of a flat-screen TV showing footage of a cyclist riding the Calderdale part of the Tour route so visitors can experience what it’s like.

There will also be display cases featuring Mytholmroyd-born Paralympic athlete Karen Darke’s helmet, gloves, skin suit and training wear.

A cycling zone for children will offer jigsaws, gallery trails and colouring sheets with a route map on the walls with key landmarks which children can decorate with their personalised paper yellow jerseys.

At Harrison Lord, Michelle Campbell has created two maps depicting the two stages of the Tour in her quirky, humorous style.

Each one shows the route in detail and is full of information about many places en route.

Her Tour work was inspired by watching a film called Belleville Rendez-vous, an animated adventure of one woman’s journey to find her grandson kidnapped during the Tour de France.

Michelle said: “I was struck by the fact that the story could easily have been set in Yorkshire so I immediately started creating images inspired by the film.”

Among other artists featured in the show, Jane O’Neill will be showing not only prints but a range of Tour de Yorkshire glass coasters, keyrings and cufflinks.

Roger Simpson’s paintings capture the excitement and movement of the race to the finish, whilst Tony Noble’s beautifully detailed paintings depict bicycles at rest.

Alex Tomlinson has created a commemorative print to celebrate the prowess of the sporting Tyke and Paul Shipley’s work captures the thrill and spectacle of the race.

The Tour de Yorkshire exhibition of prints and original paintings is at the Harrison Lord Gallery from May 24 for six weeks and is free to enter.


Cyclists will ride through Hebden Bridge at 13:36

The Tour de France publicity caravan will pass by two hours before the riders in each area.

Ripponden - 14:00

Greetland - 14:15

Huddersfield - 14:18

Holme Moss - 14:49

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