Marking a month to Grand Départ

5 June 2014

A team of cyclists, artists and farmers will come together tomorrow to help ‘mark’ One Month to Go to the start of the Grand Départ of the Tour de France by installing the latest in a stunning series of field art installations.

The cyclists, who are part of the Fields of Vision initiative for the Yorkshire Festival 2014, will ride a short time trial in Oxenhope with their tyre tracks revealing the outline of a female figure celebrating the freedom cycling gave to women, called The Leap.

The giant installation, designed by West Yorkshire artist Louise Lockhart, will be seen by visitors to the county from June 5th and television viewers of the Tour de France when it starts in exactly one month’s time on 5th July. It will be one of 12 field art installations which will be visible across Stage Two of the Grand Départ.

Geoff Wood, creative director, Fields of Vision, said: For our team working on Fields of Vision, the Tour de France is a fantastic chance to show just what talented artists we have in the region and to use their skills to make art on a truly epic scale. Delivering a project as ambitious as this has been a big undertaking.

We are really looking forward to seeing the results of our work on the television and sharing our work with all the viewers. We hope, of course that this will encourage people to explore this glorious landscape.


Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: It’s fitting that this team of cyclists should help us mark One Month to Go to the start of the Tour.

It is images like these, beamed to the world, which will put Yorkshire on the map globally. We’ve a month to go to the greatest sporting event in Yorkshire’s history, the county is crackling with excitement and we cannot wait to start welcoming the world.

Final preparations are now underway for the county to be ready to welcome the world’s best cyclists and millions of spectators to the side of the road. Initiatives include:

  • 70km of celebratory cycling jersey bunting being sent throughout the county to dress towns and villages in preparation for the big weekend
  • Taylors of Harrogate, the official tea partner of the Grand Départ, is preparing to giveaway over 5m tea bags to spectators lined along the UK stages
  • In Masham, over 100,000 pints of beers are predicted to be sold from its breweries during the Tour de France weekend. The biggest party in the town’s history
  • Harrogate Borough Council after a call out for 3,000 knitted bunting jerseys, have been inundated with 23,000 jerseys
  • In Ripley – which is styled on an historic French village complete with Hotel du Ville – a giant Tricolour of flowers is being planted on the castle terraces to be visible from the air
  • Fans from around the world have contributed, when Bradford Visitor Information Centre appealed for yellow knitted triangles, Australian fan Tanya Travers, from Williamstown, Victoria, saw the appeal on twitter and created some bunting triangles
  • Knaresborough have filled their town with over 20 yellow bikes and 14 trompe l’oeils window murals, two of which feature cycling legends Beryl Burton and Brian Robinson
  • The first ever Official Painting of the Grand Départ by North Yorkshire artist Alister Colley has been unveiled, depicting an imagined Yorkshire landscape featuring 28 landmarks and landscapes.
  • The first ever Tour de France Grand Départ shops have opened to queues around the block in Leeds Trinity and Sheffield’s Meadowhall
  • The official song of the Grand Départ is due for release this month. The Road is written by York’s Alistair Griffin and features Bradford’s Kimberley Walsh
  • 500,000 spectator guides have been published – including versions in Dutch, French and German
  • A new version of has also gone live with interactive traffic and travel information to help visitors and residents plan their journeys to and from the event, as well as being mobile and tablet device responsive to welcome fans on the move.
  • And to help celebrate the arrival of the Tour a 30 Day Digital Giveaway will commence via @letouryorkshire with prizes from Team Sky, Team Belkin, the Rapha Tempest Festival and other partners.


Photograph: The Leap design laid out ready for cyclists to mark into the turf in Oxenhope as part of Fields of Vision

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