Harrogate to get new 'Street Ranger' as BID pledges to back businesses all the way in 2022

Harrogate BID toasted 12 months of hard work for businesses at its AGM today and pledged to do even more in the year ahead.

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 5:11 pm
Supporting Harrogate businesses and keeping the town centre clean - From left Street Ranger Chris Ashby, Harrogate host Jo Caswell, Harrogate BID manager Matthew Chapman and Harrogate BID team member Bethany Allen.

Today's meeting at the Crown Hotel also saw the business-funded, not-for-profit organisation also reveal some of the figures behind its success stories in driving footfall to the town centre which included:

265 businesses being promoted for free on the LoyalFree app which has seen Harrogate BID partner with the award-winning place promotion app LoyalFree to provide a free platform for local businesses to promote offers.

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£28,415 of spending in Harrogate shops and businesses via the sale of Harrogate Gift Card introduced by Harrogate BID.

1,200 cars used free parking in Harrogate town centre thanks to Harrogate BID's Free After Three offer in the festive season last month.

£36,063 in extra business for bars from Harrogate Beer Week last year sponsored by Harrogate BID.

3,200 people visited the Father Christmas Experience created at the Crown Hotel by Harrogate BID.

42% extra passengers travelling into Harrogate town centre thanks to Harrogate Bus Company's Sunday Freeway initiative sponsored by Harrogate BID.

1.45 million digital views for material and stories generated by Harrogate BID.

40,000 square metres of pavement and street furniture power-washed thanks to Harrogate BID.

More than 100,000 LEDs in Harrogate's Christmas lights provided by Harrogate BID.

190 floral baskets and planters for Harrogate town centre.

Speaking at today's AGM, Harrogate BID's chair Sara Ferguson, who was recently re-elected, said: "We entered 2021 on the back of a third national lockdown but we continued to meet, albeit, virtually.

"Without question it was an exceptionally busy, demanding and rewarding year and one where we have continued to make a positive difference in the town centre.

"We are really proud of what we achieved for our levy payers last year."

Harrogate BID manager Matthew Chapman, who joined the team seven months ago said he was mindful that BID belonged to the town's businesses.

Mr Chapman told today's meeting: "From the Lego Trail and new street art in the town centre to cleaner streets and big promotional campaigns, it has been an excitingly busy time.

"What I am most proud of is the collaborations we formed in the Christmas run-up which really made it a successful campaign for town centre businesses.

"I am passionate that Harrogate BID belongs to the businesses within the BID area and I am confident our support will go up a notch in 2022."

The meeting also heard a lengthy list of activities, events, promotions and campaigns planned for 2022 by Harrogate BID as it supports the town centre in what has been hailed as one of the best recoveries from lockdown in Britain in terms of the footfall for shops and businesses.

Just a few of Harrogate BID's plans for 2022 are:

A new Street Ranger to keep the town centre looking spick and span will begin later this month with another round of street cleaning to follow.

A new #HasToBeHarrogate digital campaign on social media including a new #HasToBeHarrogate shared with Welcome To Yorkshire.

Lobbying for more electric car charging points to be introduced in the town centre.

Supporting efforts to make Harrogate top of the leader board once more in Yorkshire in Bloom.

New initiatives to cut costs for Harrogate town centre businesses.

Harrogate BID manager Matthew Chapman said: "As great as the Christmas campaign of events and activities was, we need to show we are not just a one-trick pony.

"BID is not just for Christmas, it is for all-year round."

Looking ahead to the months ahead, Harrogate BID chair Sara Ferguson said: “This month our Street Ranger, whose main remit is to keep the town centre looking spick and span, will make his official debut. So, look out for him and his branded electric vehicle complete with jet washer.

“Our street cleansing crew will be back in March for the first of four major cleaning and weeding sessions, ensuring Harrogate looks fresh and clean in time for Easter.

“On the back of the success of the Harrogate Christmas Fayre, we are looking at hosting a series of pop-up markets, each with a different offering and appeal.

“And we will be working in partnership with LoyalFree to create a series of ‘shop local’ campaigns.

“Making a welcome return this summer will be the Harrogate Lego Trail.

“The good news is we will be adding more local locations and local lego models.”