Celebration to mark Society’s new Harrogate base

Branch manager Rachael Magowan and sales and marketing director Ian Bullock join local school pupil George Atkinson to declare the new branch officially open. (S)

Branch manager Rachael Magowan and sales and marketing director Ian Bullock join local school pupil George Atkinson to declare the new branch officially open. (S)

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The Yorkshire Building Society has relocated in Harrogate to a flagship new branch on Oxford Street.

The Society used the occasion to demonstrate its support for community initiaitves, and invited schoolchildren and community representatives to an opening ceremony.

Children from the town and surrounding areas joined the Society’s colleagues and customers for a day of family fun to mark the opening.

Bilton Grange Primary School pupil, George Atkinson, cut the official ribbon with branch manager Rachael Magowan and Ian Bullock, sales and marketing director, to kick-start the day of celebrations.

George, aged 10, won the chance to open the event after taking part in a Society-run poster competition. His winning poster will be displayed in the branch for four weeks and he won £100 for his school and £100 for himself in a children’s savings account.

Ten other youngsters also won £100 each in a savings account after winning a separate quiz competition, providing a boost to the town’s next generation of savers.

Rachael Magowan, branch manager, said: “George and the other children who visited the branch to open their savings accounts were absolutely fantastic and I’m so pleased we’ve been able to give local children a little helping hand.”

Guests at the open day were invited to tour the new-look branch, meet the team and join colleagues for tea and cake.

A children’s entertainer was also on hand, much to the delight of families, and those who joined in with the day’s event were given free goody bags and the chance to win a VIP hospitality day at the Great Yorkshire Show.

“Being a part of the town’s community is very important to my team and me and we’re looking forward to being a part of the town’s high street and wider community for a long time to come,” added Rachael.

After hosting the open day, the branch team then pulled on their trainers to take part in the Saint Michael’s Star Walk on Saturday evening.

Staff hope it will be the first of many events for the branch who are aiming to raise £2,000 for Saint Michael’s hospice by the end of the year.