A former Silsden professional cyclist who left for Australia nearly 30 years ago has been back in the area.

Eric Stone, best known for winning the international Three Peaks cyclo-cross, was seen riding the area’s country lanes over the festive period. During his visit he called to see Cullingworth couple Paul and Sandra Corcoran at their bike shop, Pennine Cycles, and he gave the thumbs-up to the arrival of the Tour de France in July.

“Eric said he was amazed that Le Tour was coming to Yorkshire and that it is a once-in-a-lifetime happening which he hopes everyone will support,” said Mrs Corcoran.