Station Parade protest plan

NADV1103293 Unhappy shop owners.  Commercial Street.110393AMd
NADV1103293 Unhappy shop owners. Commercial Street.110393AMd

CRITICS of the proposed re-routing of Harrogate town centre say they are planning a drive-through protest to highlight the scheme’s shortcomings.

The event, which would see protestors driving the suggested new route along Cheltenham Mount, Bower Road and East Parade, is set to take place on Friday, May 13.

Sue Kramer, of Crown Jewellers on Commercial Street, said: “This is basically to highlight the traffic chaos. It will be on Friday the 13th and show the nightmare set for Harrogate’s streets.”

She said a second meeting of objectors to the scheme had been a major success.

The group will also seek legal advice on the proposals and hold a protest march outside Harrogate Library when an exhibition about the plans takes place there on Wednesday, May 11.

A notice of motion was approved by Harrogate Council last week, asking for a presentation on the proposals from county council highways officers, which then took place on Wednesday.

Coun Anthony Alton, deputy leader of the council, told the meeting: “I do believe we should send a message to North Yorkshire that we don’t like this scheme.”

Coun Pat Marsh said: “This is a very contentious issue not just for the centre of Harrogate but right across the district.

“I’ve every sympathy with what they are trying to do but I think it’s time NYCC recognised we exist as representatives of the people of Harrogate district and they showed us some courtesy by coming along and explaining what they’re proposing to do.”

Other members criticised the standard of the consultation - including the council’s explanatory leaflet.

The county authority will hold exhibitions about its proposals at the Victoria Shopping Centre on Saturday, May 7, between 10am and 5pm, and at Harrogate Library on Wednesday, May 11, from 4-7pm.

Coun Gareth Dadd, executive member for highways, said: “These exhibitions will ensure we capture the views of residents and traders in the centre of Harrogate.We are also determined to gather the opinions of a group of people who are vital to the economic prosperity of Harrogate... the shoppers who use the town centre.”

Public consultation on the county council’s plans continues until May 16. For more information, go to www.northyorks.gov.uk/harrogatetransport