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'Sunflower' bicycle marks Tour de France in York

Sunflower shapes create bicycle shape at York Minster for Tour de France Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Hand-coloured sunflowers are being laid out in the shape of a bicycle in York Minster to mark the Tour de France and to let people know about the work of the city's St Leonard's Hospice.

More than a thousand sunflower shapes, each of them decorated by pupils from primary schools around York will form the bike shape in the Minster's north transept.

Sunflowers are the symbol of the national Hospice movement, and every year since 1996 St Leonard's Hospice has involved local schoolchildren in a sunflower display in the city.

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Funding gap in Tour de France budget

Just 107 days before the world's elite cyclists descend on Yorkshire for the Grand Depart, a gap has appeared in the budget.

The cost of traffic management, stewarding the route through Yorkshire, even providing the toilets, signs and barriers has been hugely underestimated. The event companies bidding for the contract are still waiting to find out if they have been successful.

The entire budget for the tour is £27 million, but when you look a little closer the amount set aside for event management initially was £2.2 million.

Today its been confirmed that one of the figure's quoted is twice that amount. More than four million four hundred and seventy five thousand pounds.

Duncan Wood spoke to Sir Rodney Walker, the man in charge of Tour de France Hub 2014, which has to deliver the Grand Depart and asked him if he was concerned about the finances:

Name unveiled for Brian Robinson tribute beer

A beer created in honour of Yorkshire cycling hero, Brian Robinson, will be called Stage Winner.

ITV Yorkshire

Brian became the first Briton to win a stage of Le Tour in 1958 and again in 1959.

To mark his victory the Little Valley Brewery near Hebden Bridge has produced the ale, along with the iconic polka dot label.

Brewers Sue Cooper and Vim Vanderspek, keen cyclists, said they wanted to pay tribute to Brian and capture his determinaton and spirit - in liquid form.

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Beers to you Mr Robinson!

A special beer has been brewed to honour the Yorkshireman who made history in the Tour De France.

Brian samples the first batch of the new brew Credit: ITV Yorkshire

As the county prepares for Le Grand Depart in July, Brian Robinson is still remembered as the man who blazed a trail for British cycling. He became the first Brit to win a stage of Le Tour in 1958 and again in 1959.

To mark his victory the Little Valley Brewery near Hebden Bridge has produced an ale - the name of which is being kept under wraps until later today.

Brewers Sue Cooper and Vim Vanderspek, keen cyclists, said they wanted to pay tribute to Brian and capture his determinaton and spirit - in liquid form.

As for Brian, he says he's looking forward to going into a pub - and asking for his beer.

Clock starts ticking on Tour de France countdown commission

The Tour de France is coming to Leeds Credit: ITV Sport

A citywide commission has been launched to design a unique clock which will help Leeds count down to the start of this year’s Tour de France.

Leeds City Council, in partnership with the Trinity Leeds shopping complex and the University of Leeds, is calling on the city’s creative community to submit designs for a public countdown clock to mark the days ticking down to the start of the world’s largest annual sporting event on July. 5

Trinity Leeds shopping complex Credit: Leeds & Partners

Working with students from the University of Leeds School of Mechanical Engineering, the winning entry will be turned into reality and placed in Trinity Leeds to be a focal point as Leeds builds towards the day of the Grand Départ.

Entries are now open, with the design brief able to be downloaded from [http://www.leeds.gov.uk/council/Pages/Tour-de-France.aspx or by request by emailinggranddepartleeds@leeds.gov.uk.

The closing date for designs is Friday February 7 at 5.30pm and a shortlist of designers will be announced the following week. The commissioned designer will work with the University of Leeds staff and students to develop the detailed technical drawings and design the mechanisms to fit the design.

The completed clock will then be unveiled in the Trinity Leeds shopping complex in Leeds city centre on Thursday 27 March, coinciding with 100 days to go to the Grand Départ and the start of the Yorkshire Festival 2014 celebrating the best of culture and the arts in the county.

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