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Harrogate's vision for 2024 to build 'progressive and vibrant' place punching above its weight

The vision for 2024 is for the Borough to be strong visibility nationally, regionally and locally and be recognised as punching above its weight.
The vision for 2024 is for the Borough to be strong visibility nationally, regionally and locally and be recognised as punching above its weight.

Harrogate Council says it needs an additional two years to achieve its ambition of transforming the Borough into a “progressive and vibrant place to live, work and visit.”

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When the Council’s seven-person Cabinet meets on Wednesday June 20, Chief Executive Wallace Sampson will seek approval to build on the Council’s existing “corporate transformation” programme - but extend its completion date to 2024.

The original programme, Our Strategy for Success” (OSFS), was launched in 2016 and due to be completed in 2020.

But Mr Sampson is now recommending that the strategy should be given a new name, 2024 Programme, with an extended deadline to 2024 which would coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Borough Council; created following the major reorganisation of local government in 1974.

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He will argue that in order to deliver a large number of projects within the OSFS programme as well as realising other important aspirations, it’s necessary to “refocus the Council’s transformation programme and vision.”

He said his vision for 2024 was that the Borough would have strong visibility nationally, regionally and locally and be recognised as punching above its weight.

He envisaged Harrogate cementing its reputation as “the events destination of the north.”

“It will be a progressive & vibrant place, with cohesive communities and where people feel safe,” he said.

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Mr Sampson believed the Borough would also be reaping the benefits from major developments in both the public and private sectors which would boost the district’s economy.

“We will also be well-connected, with a more robust infrastructure, both in transport and technology – which will help support businesses.”

Meanwhile, Harrogate Council in 2024 would be one that was “customer focused, commercially driven and fit for the future’.

Mr Sampson claimed that the OSFS programme had already notched up several significant achievements including the completion of the new civic centre and successful relocation of 500 staff.

It had also delivered on producing a projected income of more than £2.5 million from the Council’s commercial activities.

Other achievements included developing an award-winning website and successfully rolling out a leadership and management programme aimed at increasing the skills and effectiveness of senior personnel.