'Amazing spirit' of Harrogate firms in office crisis

Copthall Bridge House in Harrogate.
Copthall Bridge House in Harrogate.

Harrogate has rallied round small businesses facing a 'mass eviction' at one of the town's prime office blocks.

A reported 75 sub-tenants at Copthall Bridge House were left looking to move quickly last week after Regus, one the world’s largest providers of flexible workplaces, opted not to renew its lease from Commercial Estates Group, who manage the three-storey building.

The decision, which had not been forseen, meant the existing lease would expire in mid-November.

But the supportive response of the wider business community was this week praised by the small firms as they rushed to find new offices .

The owner of one affected business in Copthall Bridge House, Martin Nolan of MJN Marketing Ltd, said: “Serviced office space is in short supply in the town centre generally but when 70+ businesses are looking for a solution within a ten-day period, is asking a lot.

“But you have to get on with it and the spirit in the building has been one of resilience and positivity.”

“Most firms including my own have managed to find office space thanks to the very welcome response from the local business community.”

A spokesperson for CEG, which also manages The Exchange and Central House in Harrogate, said talks about the lease being extended on approximately 14,000 square feet of office space on two floors, had been going on for six months and a successful conclusion seemed a formality.

The spokesperson said: “We were surprised to hear that Regus wishes to vacate the building.

“We were of the impression Regus were expanding at Copthall Bridge House as we were in advanced discussions to renew the lease and for them to potentially take further space, so this news comes as a shock to us to."

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