Should Harrogate have a park and ride?

Harrogate's glaring lack of a park and ride scheme and coach park is being criticised as a major obstacle to ensuring town centre prosperity.

A glimpse of Harrogate's future? Hull's Priory Park and Ride bus service pictured in 2010.
A glimpse of Harrogate's future? Hull's Priory Park and Ride bus service pictured in 2010.

After backing calls by worried businesses to improve Harrogate town centre, the president of Harrogate Chamber of Commerce says attracting more shoppers and visitors will require practical changes.Steve Scarre said: “We need to be more proactive to maximise Harrogate’s many strengths. When it comes to park and ride schemes, we don’t have any. Everywhere else has got one.”

As Harrogate's population expands, the pressure may build for road traffic alleviation schemes such as the one at York or Hull.Operated by City of York Council York, the York park and ride on the outskirts of the city is is the largest in the United Kingdom with a total of 4,970 car spaces.

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The Harrogate Advertiser’s current series of articles on ideas for ensuring the prosperity of the town’s high street has seen local business leaders and local businesses themselves emphasise the importance of Harrogate playing host to popular public events on a far more regular basis.Rival towns and cities are already stepping up their efforts in this area, particularly in York and Leeds.

Steve Scarre echoes what many are saying in making the case for events to be held on both the Stray and Station Parade area near Victoria shopping centre.If this is to happen successfully, he adds the town needs to have the infrastructure in place to cope with it.Steve said: “Harrogate doesn’t even have a coach park at the moment. Why don’t we identify some land and just do it?”

Do you support town centre change? Would you like to see a park and ride for Harrogate?Post us at the Harrogate Advertiser’s Facebook page.