Harrogate’s Big Bike Bash bust the budget

NAWN 1506201AM15 Big Bike Bash. (1506201AM15)
NAWN 1506201AM15 Big Bike Bash. (1506201AM15)

Harrogate council had to put aside an extra £50,000 for its inaugral cycling event, the Big Bike Bash which took place last month.

A year after the Tour de France Grand Depart was hosted in the district, Harrogate Borough Council hosted its own cycling event, the Big Bike Bash, on the Stray.

The event, which was held in June, attracted crowds of thousands to Montpellier Hill, however it cost the council, up to £135,000, more than they had initially budgetted for.

In December 2014, the council set aside £85,000 for the event but in May just a few weeks before the event the Cabinet voted to stump up an extra £50,000 toward the event.

A council spokesman explained that not all of this extra £50,000 was spent, but the amount left over is still unclear at this stage.

Council leader Richard Cooper (Con, High Harrogate) said: “We originally thought it would cost £85,000, but we had never done anything like this before. We wanted to spend the money on this to make sure everything was right. The extra £50,000 was to dot the I’s and cross the T’s.”

He explained that the Leeds City Region Business Rates Pool Sub-Committee contributed £85,000 for the event, meaning just the additional £50,000 came from the council’s budget.

Coun Cooper hopes that the Big Bike Bash event, combined with the success of the Tour in 2014 will stand the town in good stead as it bids to host a stage of the Tour de Yorkshire in 2016.