A FORMER hotel currently undergoing a £1 million transformation could help put Keighley on the cycling tourism map.

Secure cycle storage is being incorporated into the development of holiday let apartments on the upper floors of the old Victoria Hotel building, in Cavendish Street.

Worth Valley Developments, the team behind the conversion scheme, hopes the accommodation will provide a base for people wanting to explore the area by bike.

Team members Jon and Lesley Ellis are both keen cyclists.

Lesley, part of the Queensbury Queens of the Mountain cycling group, said: “Jon, I and the family all have a long-standing passion for cycling and know the benefits it has on both our physical and mental wellbeing, as well as the positive impact on the local environment. We cycle not just for practical reasons, but also for fun and regularly cycle on holiday.

“Right from the outset, Jon and I wanted to ensure that the holiday lets upstairs at the Victoria would be attractive to cyclists and the team identified that there is a big market for cycling tourism.

“We know how much the Tour de Yorkshire has brought to the area when it comes to road cycling and there is also lots of appeal for those preferring cross-country routes, with so many options for mountain bikers throughout the hills of West and North Yorkshire.

“This is why we have incorporated secure cycle storage into our design – enabling guests to base themselves in Keighley, leaving their bikes safe after a long day exploring whilst having a drink in the pub downstairs or going out for a bite to eat in town.

“The Aire Valley has a strong cycling history – with a wealth of clubs and festivals over the years – and the Keighley Cycling Club is still based in Cavendish Street.

“We are proactively contacting people across the cycling community to spread the word about what Keighley and the surrounding area has to offer. We would also welcome any input that local cycling enthusiasts can provide to help us accommodate their needs.” Email thevictoriakeighley@gmail.com or message via social media, @thevictoriakeighley.

The building will feature ground-floor business premises, with apartments above. Four businesses are already lined-up to occupy the units – an artisan bakery, a beauty salon, a bar with micro-brewery and an independent retailer.