Thursday, 17 April 2014

Summer 2014 and exciting time for Cycling in Yorkshire

As you might expect, there's loads going on in and around Le Grand Depart but just wanted to alert you to the following that occur in or around the Worth and Aire Valleys this summer - apologies to anyone/anything we have  missed!!

Sun 27th April
Project Hollywood "On Yer Bike" Photoshoot, Oxenhope
Many will have seen the "2014" Hollywood-style logo in the fields near Oxenhope and be aware of the various themes that have been highlighted by it "Eat Pies", "Knit Wool", etc.  Now's a chance to be part of an "On Yer Bike" aspect - just re-route your Sunday ride to arrive in Oxenhope at 11am and become part of Tour de France history!!  Contact Russell Brown ( for details.  All welcome!

Wed 7th May
Truck and Cycle Safety Day, University Academy Keighley, Greenhead Rd, Keighley

Schoolkids from 11am till 5pm (slots still available), after which it's open season for anyone to come along, sit in a big truck, play with police sirens and blue flashing lights and do a "Top Gear" style lap of the running track on your bike.  Followed at 7pm by "Le Grand Debate:  Truckers v Cyclists" with an expert panel including the police, Road Haulage Association, WYMetro, Highways, Cyclists.  Should be a really good opportunity to hear all sorts of views and put your own forward.  All welcome.

Sun 25th May
Pace the Train, Oxenhope

A "Race the Train" event between Keighley and Oxenhope has been running for many years.  This year, there is an hour-or-so road closure on the section of the route along Hebden Road  between Haworth Brow and Oxenhope (Manorlands) in order that riders of all standards can have a go at the Sue Ryder Pace the Train Challenge.  Starting in the late afternoon and timed with the departure of a K&WVR steam train from Keighley, riders can do 1, 2, 3 or even 4 "laps" of the closed road route and try to beat the train's arrival at Oxenhope Station.  Bradford University's Cycling4All programme will ensure that this is also possibly the first ever closed road ride for riders with disabilities.  See
There's a BBQ in Oxenhope following the exertions!!  For those on "Strava" there is a 24th/25th weekend long challenge to individually do the original route from Keighley (Low Mill Lane) to Oxenhope and record their times and post to Manorlands.
Supported by All Terrain Cycles
Fri 30th May
Tourism, Sport & Active Leisure Seminar, University Academy Keighley

A morning seminar organised by the Active Bradford Partnership designed to highlight the role of sport and active leisure in increasing tourism to our region and our district in particular.  Of interest to everyone who is keen on developing active leisure and sports activities for local, regional, national and international participants, as well as accommodation owners, restaurants, shops, services, etc. It's a fabulous opportunity to really develop our area as a world class active tourism destination. £15/delegate (35 concessions).  Keynote speaker is Gary Verity of Welcome to Yorkshire, the man who brought Le Tour to Yorkshire.
Contact John Dennis on for more details.

Sun 1st June
Le Petit Depart, Sportive and Group Ride, Skipton

Organised by Craven District Council, a 78-mile sportive involving 3 climbs and 6 dales along parts of the Stage 1 2014 TdF route, and a 33-mile ride for all in a similar area.  See for details and entries.

Thu 5th June
Fields of Vision, Active Bike Art Opportunity

Those who have seen the Yorkshire Festival 2014 brochure, the 100 Days of Art and Culture leading up to Le Grand Depart, will have noted the "Fields of Vision" project on pg 31 which has its genesis in the Worth Valley and the Worth the Tour Partnership.  As part of this project, a field has been identified above Oxenhope on the Calder-Aire Link Route to the Pennine Bridleway, onto which an artist has designed a figure of a dancing woman, designed to represent the emancipation of women as a result of the development of the bicycle (leading apparently to greater freedom in terms of dress, independence from men in terms of travel and the opportunity to meet partners from a wider radius under what were at the time very restricted geographical constraints for women!).  The shape will be marked out on the ground, and riders on mountain or cross bikes will be asked to ride round the continuous loop, so carving the figure upon the ground via their knobbly tyres!  All of the Fields of Vision artworks are designed at such a scale as to be seen by the helicopter on 6th July; in the meantime BBC Countryfile have expressed a strong interest in filming the proceedings!  Contact Andrew Wood at for details.

Sat 28th June
Cycling for Life Exhibition, Central Hall, Alice Street, Keighley, BD21 3JD

To be officially opened by Chris Young, former British Champion and British Cycling representative at 10am.  Caters for beginners to experienced cyclists - all sorts of stuff going on admission!!
Again part of the 100 Day Yorkshire Festival.  Contact 07931 312599 for details.

Wed 2nd July
Keighley & Craven Charity Hill Climb, East Morton - Le Tour Special!

The 10th version of this popular and informal event, where riders and runners guess their times before departing, at 30-second intervals, to run or cycle up to Keighley Gate (top of Rombalds Moor).  No watches or computers allowed - the winner is the one nearest the estimated time!!  There is a special challenge to bikies to freewheel from the final corner at the top of the moor back down to the pub without pedalling - it is possible with a following wind, good bearings and a few cojones!  All in aid of Haematology and Oncology Day Unit at Airedale Hospital.  Based at the excellent Busfeild Arms, who do a mean hot supper and serve excellent beer.  Starts 6.30pm (arrive 6ish to register your estimate)£3/person - all proceeds to HODU.  Contact John Dennis on  No entries, just turn up on the night.

Fri 4th July
Keighley Tour de France Gala Performance, Victoria Hall, Keighley
Join us in Victoria Hall on Friday 4 July for an evening of exciting entertainment as we officially open the celebrations on the weekend that sees the arrival of the Tour de France Grand Depart in Keighley!
For this once in a lifetime spectacular, the story of the Tour de France since its conception in 1903 and the highlights of Keighley's cycling history will be woven together, interpreted by a variety of  wonderful artistic performances.  The likes of Steeton Male Voice Choir, Keighley Amateur Singing & Dance Group, The Nydza School of Dance and a collection of enthusiatic school groups will celebrate the key moments and narration between the acts will be provided by by local artist and cycling enthusiast Frank O'Dwyer. 
Celebrating each great milestone will enable the audience to learn how it has come to be such an iconic event and how Keighley with its proud cycling history is the perfect place for this celebration to take place.

Sat 5th July   
Le Grand Depart: Stage 1  Leeds to Harrogate
Cycling Film Festival, Central Hall, Keighley

3pm Wadjda (PG) How a Saudi girls gets her own bike against the odds
5pm Belleville Rendezvous (12) An animated comedy of the rescue of a TdF rider from the Mafia by his grandmother (!)
7.30pm A Sunday in Hell (PG) Film about Paris-Roubaix Spring Classic:  mud, blood and guts!!
£5 per film or £12 for three
Details on 07931 312599 

Sun 6th July
TdF Stage 2:  York to Sheffield via Keighley and Haworth!

Sun 21st July
Bronte Sportive
, Leeds City College, Keighley
Appetites whetted by watching the Grand Depart and having been glued to British Eurosport for the rest of the tour, it's time to have a go on a specially re-routed Sue Ryder Care Bronte Sportive that takes in part of the Stage 2 route between Keighley and Elland, before finding some more hills to come back over to Keighley.  Still 88 miles and 21 classic climbs (including Cragg Vale) at its most extreme, but 20-odd, 40-odd and 60-odd mile versions also available.  Show the pros how it's done!  See   for details and entries.
As in previous years this event is supported by All Terrain Cycles

Sun 21st September
Bronte MTB Challenge, Oxenhope

Three great off-road routes: Charlotte (longest), Emily (medium) and Ann (family) from the park in Oxenhope.
Details at

Sun 28th September
Bradford SkyRide and "Ride Le Route"

New date for Bradford SkyRide and 40-mile "Ride Le Route" sportive over part of the 2014 stage routes.  More details to follow!

And finally, for those with enough energy left to run!!

Bradford City Runs, Sunday 26th October
5K/10K/Half Marathon plus Kids Run.  From 9.15am, City Park.  See
Loads of water guaranteed!!!!!