#HasToBeHarrogate - How Harrogate BID will boost businesses in 2022

Harrogate BID will today unveil a new high-profile it “HasToBeHarrogate” campaign as part of major plans to support the town’s economic recovery from Covid in 2022.

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 9:46 am
Harrogate BID chair Sara Ferguson.

The new promotional drive to shine a light on Harrogate’s superb businesses and unique features that set them apart from its rivals is only one of a long list of business support measures set to be unveiled at BID’s AGM today, Thursday.

After a successful series of measures last year were praised for driving footfall towards Harrogate’s retail sector, Harrogate BID’s chair Sara Ferguson says the business-funded organisation has no intention of taking its foot off the pedal this year.

As well as the “HasToBeHarrogate” promotion, BID’s plans for months ahead in the town centre include:

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A series of pop-up markets;

Shop local campaigns;

A grant scheme to help businesses save money;

More street entertainment and events;

The return of the Lego Trail;

A new Street Ranger, to keep the town centre looking spick and span;

Improved street cleaning and weeding drives;

Barrier baskets and planters installed.

Full details on the “HastobeHarrogate” promotion are yet to be revealed, but Harrogate BID Chair Sara Ferguson said: “The good news is that we are going to do more to make Harrogate even more appealing, giving locals and visitors plenty of reasons to ‘pop into town’ time and time again. We want to promote Harrogate as Yorkshire’s number one destination to shop, eat and drink.”

Recent months have seen BID build up a network of partnerships to boost the environment for businesses.

With figures showing footfall in Harrogate was only 10% down in 2021 on 2019 despite the pandemic, it’s an approach they intend to build on in 2022.

Mrs Ferguson said: “Last year, we worked in partnership with a variety of different organisations, be it giving business a stronger voice, supporting efforts to reduce anti-social behaviour in the town, providing free parking or sponsoring a variety of events, and this year we intend to continue this approach.”

While Covid limited what BID could do in terms of on-street entertainment and events for much of 2021, the brighter picture in terms of restrictions promises to free its hands to do even more in the new year.

Part of the growing confidence can be seen in BID’s plans for its forthcoming promotional campaign, “HasToBeHarrogate”.

But it will also be on display with regard a major event this year which is a real one-off.

With The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee being marked in early June - and the country being given two days off to celebrate this magnificent milestone - Harrogate BID is drawing up plans to ensure the town’s businesses make the most of this four-day holiday.

That positive spirit over Harrogate’s future comes out loud and clear in BID manager Matthew Chapman’s latest column in this week's print edition of the Harrogate Advertiser.

“The BID team has already come up with a number of ideas,” he writes this week.

“But we would love to throw a huge party, one that everyone is invited to, and one that we can all enjoy and be a part of.”

Businesses attending Harrogate BID’s AGM at the Crown Hotel today, Thursday, will also hear chair Sara Ferguson emphasise the importance of keeping the town bustling and clean.

Mrs 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.”