Boats bonanza for Tour arrival

Rochdale Canal in Mytholmroyd
Rochdale Canal in Mytholmroyd

A boat gathering is being organised along the Rochdale Canal to watch the Grand Depart cavalcade pass through the upper Calder Valley.

Boats are being invited to come to Hebden Bridge and Mytholmroyd during the period between June 28 and July 13.

Organisers hope that lots of boaters will not only come to watch the race but also spend money in shops and food outlets in the area, boosting the local economy.

The boat gathering is being organised by the IWA West Riding branch along with local volunteers from the Rochdale Canal Linear Park Group and OWLS (Observers of Waterways Lengths) to coincide with the second stage of the Tour de France.

The gathering also coincides with Hebden Bridge Arts Festival and the weekend-long Mytholmroyd Gala.

To minimise the effect of many boats arriving in a short space of time, and travel restrictions on the main road, moorings are being allocated with a choice of sites from Hebden Bridge to Mytholmroyd.

A booking form is available online at

There is a £10 booking fee. The closing date is May 31.

Any businesses who would like to include information about their firm in a welcome pack being put together for the boaters is asked to email

Volunteers are needed to help with the planned boat gathering.

Diana Monahan, one of the volunteers, said: “There is no need to commit to a specific time or task at the moment.

“However, we will need to know if you are interested in being a volunteer lock-keeper during that period because some training will be available, provided by the Canal and River Trust.”

Anybody who would like to volunteer is asked contact Diana by emailing