Tour De France 2014: Government pledge £10m towards Grand Depart in Yorkshire

The first three stages of next year's race will be held in the UK

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The Independent Online

The Government will provide £10million of the expected £21million cost of next year's Tour De France Grand Depart, it has been announced.

It has also been confirmed that Sir Rodney Walker, the former chairman of UK Sport and the Rugby Football League, has been appointed to head the organising committee for next year's event in Yorkshire.

The opening stages of the 101st Tour run between Leeds, Harrogate, York and Sheffield on July 5 and 6 next year before moving on to Cambridge and London on July 7.

Sport minister Hugh Robertson announced the Government funding today, with the remainder coming from local authorities and other partners.

Robertson said: "The Tour de France is the biggest event in cycling and for this country to host the Grand Depart is a real honour.

"We want to help deliver a world class event that boosts all local economies where the race will pass through and encourages more people to get involved in cycling."

The new organising committee, called TDF 2014 Ltd, will have a board that includes representation from Yorkshire and Cambridge local authorities, as well as British Cycling, Transport for London and UK Sport.

Walker said: "I am honoured to have been asked to lead the board, and confident that I will be able to bring together the very best skills in Yorkshire and expertise from across the UK to deliver an excellent event we will all be proud of."

Earlier this week, Labour's deputy leader Harriet Harman wrote to Tour leaders calling for a women's cycle race to be held alongside the Grand Depart.