Cycling fans across the district can now make specific plans for the Tour de France after detailed timings for the first two stages through Yorkshire were announced.
Organisers have revealed what time the cyclists and accompanying convoy of vehicles will arrive in the towns and villages of the district on July 5 and 6.
The schedule for the Leeds-Harrogate section of the Grand Depart on Saturday, July 5, gives slightly different times depending on whether the cyclists are travelling at 44km/h (27mph), 42km/h (26mph) or 40km/h (24mph).
The publicity caravan will set off two hours ahead of the fastest riders, leaving Leeds at 9.10am and following the route along the A61 and then the A659 into Wharfedale.
The first cyclists will depart at 11.10am and are expected to pass through Arthington at noon, Pool-in-Wharfedale at 12.06pm, and Otley just six minutes later at 12.12pm.
The Tour’s route then makes its way along the A660, including Burley-in-Wharfedale bypass and A65 through Ilkley, with the front riders expected to pass Addingham at 12.33pm before proceeding into North Yorkshire.
Otley Town Council – which is setting aside £10,000 to support Tour de France-related events – expects the town to be heaving, with up to 18,000 spectators.
Meanwhile, the detailed itinerary for Sunday July 6 shows that the caravan of vehicles are due to enter Silsden from 11.02am, with the cyclists expected in the town from 12.52pm.
The first cyclists will enter Keighley from 12.55pm onwards and are scheduled to arrive in Cross Roads at 1.08pm. Caravan vehicles and riders will start to show up in Haworth at 11.22am and 1.10pm respectively and in Oxenhope from 11.32am and 1.19pm respectively.
Although the long column of cars, floats and cyclists should take about two hours to pass each point, organisers have warned that roads along the route will be closed in advance of the Tour’s arrival.
Your questions on race day answered
Local authority officers preparing for the visit of the Tour de France are to hold an information session in Ilkley next month as plans for campsites and special events get under way.
Bradford Council is to host a public engagement session at the King’s Hall, Station Road, Ilkley, on February 13, to keep local people informed about arrangements and disruption expected when the prestigious cycle race comes to town this summer.
The session, starting at 7pm, will give residents the opportunity to find out the latest logistical information about the race, and ask officers involved with the operational side of organisation any questions.
The meeting comes after detailed timings for the first stage of the Grand Depart, on July 5, were released.
A publicity caravan, which precedes the riders, will leave Leeds at 9.10am, following a route to Harewood, Pool-in-Wharfedale, Otley, Burley-in-Wharfedale bypass, Ilkley and Addingham, before heading into North Yorkshire.
The first riders will set off two hours after the caravan and are expected in Ilkley at about 12.30pm.
But residents and businesses may have to brace themselves for road closures lasting several hours.
Ilkley parish councillor Bryan Websdale, who is working with local organisations on their own plans for the week of the race, plans to attend the meeting on February 13.
“It’s a good opportunity for local people to meet the people from the local authority who make the decisions,” he said.
He is advising Ilkley people there will be disruption over the race day, with many visitors expected for several days around the race itself.
Hundreds of camping pitches are being set up by sports clubs in Ilkley up to a week in advance of July 5 and there are plans for special events, including a bike show, and talks are under way about town-centre bike races for all ages.
Between 400 and 450 camping pitches could be set up on East Holmes Field, off Denton Road, overseen by Ilkley Cycling Club, in the week leading up to the race, said Coun Websdale.
Olicanian Cricket Club, Denton Road, and Ben Rhydding Sports Club, Coutances Way, are also planning to host camping and Ilkley Rugby Club will provide limited “glamping” – luxury camping – spaces.
Events are also planned in the Riverside Gardens, where it is planned to set up a large screen to watch the race.