Race on for Tour’s starting line
THREE Yorkshire forces involved in the policing of the Grand Départ have stopped officers taking leave, at least temporarily, for the days the event is running.
North Yorkshire Police is restricting leave for officers, PCSOs and a range of staff roles between June 27 and July 11.
West Yorkshire, the lead force for the event, will restrict leave between July 4 and 6 and South Yorkshire Police says no new applications for leave will be accepted for July 5 and 6.
Arrangements for policing of the event have not yet been completed and North Yorkshire Assistant Chief Constable Ken McIntosh said the current restrictions were in place while resources for the event were examined.
He said the forces were using the experience of the Olympic Torch run in 2012 to ensure the safety and security of the public.
Mr McIntosh said: “Visitors are not expected to come for just the two days the Tour is with us, but also on the days preceding and post the event.
“These requirements are reviewed on a regular basis and we are keeping staff informed. The police will be a small part of this significant event. The organisers anticipate that there will be a large number of volunteers assisting with the marshalling of the route.”
Chief Superintendent Barry South of West Yorkshire Police said the force had “considerable experience in dealing with large scale public events and planning for this one is at an advanced stage”.
He added: “As part of this, as is normal procedure, we are controlling annual leave on 4, 5 and 6 July until we are sure of the exact level of resourcing required.”
The Yorkshire Post reported last month that half a million pounds is to be spent on policing the Tour de France by North Yorkshire Police despite earlier claims that the organisers had not consulted the force over the cost of ensuring public safety for the event. The costs for policing in West and South Yorkshire were unclear with no figures forthcoming from either force.