Leeds & West Yorkshire

Yorkshire Tour de France arts festival 'generated £10m'

Ghost Peloton performance
Image caption Performances including neon lit riders cycling in Leeds in a "Ghost Peloton"

An arts festival marking the start of the Tour de France in Yorkshire this summer generated almost £10m for the county's economy, it has been claimed.

An independent evaluation report by marketing firm &Co said the events, which cost £2m to stage, attracted more than 800,000 visitors.

The 100-day festival ran from March.

The organiser, Welcome to Yorkshire, said it was now planning to hold a festival every two years, starting in 2016.

Festival highlights included neon lit cyclists riding through the streets of Leeds in a "Ghost Peloton", actress Maxine Peake making her writing debut with a play about about cyclist Beryl Burton at the West Yorkshire Playhouse and a sculpture by Leeds-born artist Thomas Houseago.

Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: "Yorkshire Festival shone a spotlight on Yorkshire, creating an exceptional summer for people in readiness for the grandest ever Grand Départ.

"The success of the festival shows the exceptional artistic talent we have in this county and what we have to offer the world."

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