Details of the official Grand Départ Spectator Hubs and leading locations to watch the start of this year’s Tour de France in Leeds have been revealed today.Areas along the route will play host to dedicated spectator zones as the world’s largest annual sporting event travels out from its start in Leeds city centre on Saturday 5 July.The locations named are the startline on The Headrow to Eastgate, Scott Hall Playing Fields, Harewood House, Pool in Wharfedale and Otley town centre before stage one of the world’s greatest cycle race leaves the city limits.
Scott Hall Playing Fields, Pool in Wharfedale and Otley Town Centre will also have large screens where fans can watch the full day's race.As the riders leave the startline on The Headrow at 11:10am on race morning to begin the ceremonial roll-out, they are expected to be cheered on by up to 45,000 people keen to see the historic moment as they make their way to Eastgate and then left onto Regent Street and Sheepscar Street.Heading up the A61 the peloton will pass an official Grand Départ Spectator Hub at Scott Hall Playing Fields, where 10,000 people are expected to watch.The free family-friendly hub will feature a big screen showing live coverage of the race before and after it passes by, as well as stage entertainment and activities for children including British Cycling’s ‘Go Ride’ programme. There will also be access for those with disabilities, on-site parking and food stalls. At Harewood Estate there will be a charged-for spectator zone as part of the Dare 2b Yorkshire Festival of Cycling,.A community-organised spectator zone at Pool in Wharfedale will be one of the first places on the route to see the riders competitively getting up to speed and up to 6,000 spectators are expected there. There will be offering camping facilities and a wide range of family entertainment and food throughout the day and the chance to watch the race unfold on a large temporary screen.Otley town centre is the next spot on the route and is expected to attract up to 15,000. Facilities here will include a double-sided big screen while the cafes and bars are all likely to be open with cycle racks also available.The route then continues on leaving the Leeds city limits and on to Ilkley and Skipton before heading into the Yorkshire Dales, returning via Ripon to the stage finish in Harrogate.
– Cllr Lucinda Yeadon, Leeds City Council
While these zones are great places to watch from, especially for families, we would encourage people to spread out along the route as much as possible. That way, not only will you get a better view, it will also look amazing on television if the entire route through Leeds is filled with people at the roadside all the way along. The named hubs and spectator zones are expected to be incredibly popular, so our key message for all spectators will be choose where you want to be, get there early and make a day of it celebrating what is sure to be an amazing ‘I was there’ moment for Leeds.
Wednesday marks 101 days until the Grand Départ sets off on July 5.