Concern over Knaresborough town centre shop closures

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Concerns have been raised after a number of Knaresborough businesses have closed down, leaving empty units in the town centre.

More than four units are currently up for let on Cheapside and in the past few weeks both Beckets restaurant and Cafe Crema have shut their doors.

Cafe Crema owners, Ally Faber and Rob Thomas have explained they have closed the business they ran for five years due to ill health.

Deputy Mayor Coun Tony Handley who is also a member of Knaresborough Chamber of Trade and Commerce said he was sad to see businesses in the town centre closing down.

He said: “It is always concerning to see businesses coming and going. It is sad to see closures, especially as some closures are for health reasons and it is sad to see a restaurant close, but apparently there has been a lot of interest in Beckets. The closures are in winter which suggests that a lot of places rely on the summer season.”

Coun Handley added that the closure and turnover of local businesses is not just confined to Knaresborough.

He added: “Everytime I go into Harrogate it seems there is something else gone and something else opening.”

The district’s first pound shop opened in Harrogate’s Victoria Centre last year and Coun John Batt thinks the area will see an increase in the number of budget shops.

He said: “It is very disappointing, it is always a concern when shops on our High Street have to close but some some of it has to do with the change in how people do their shopping now.

“Lots of people now use internet shopping and people who work don’t always find time to shop on the high street. I think we will see a change on the high street with lots more budget stores trying to have more shops on the high streets.”

He added: “One of the things many shops in Knaresborough rely on it a good trade over the summer season, which is why we see more closures in winter. But we want to see those shops being filled as quickly as possible.”

“I do think land lords should be more involved in the town, they should understand that market towns have different needs to other town centre high streets and should adapt to that.”

What do you think? Is enough being done to support Knaresborough business? Do you run a business in Knaresborough? Contact us and let us know. Email or call 01423 564 321.