Morrisons proposed for Harrogate’s main shopping area

NADV 1301155AM1 HMV Store. Picture : Adrian Murray (1301155AM1)
NADV 1301155AM1 HMV Store. Picture : Adrian Murray (1301155AM1)

Morrisons are hoping to open a convenience store on Harrogate’s main shopping street after HMV moves to a new premises freed up by the closure of Mothercare.

The supermarket giant have applied to Harrogate Borough Council for a license to sell alcohol at the planned M Local convenience store on Cambridge Street.

A spokesperson for Morrisons said the store which would create 20 jobs would focus on fresh food and that the supermarket chain is keen for their store to be “knitted into the community and local life.”

They added: “We’re in the early stages of discussion about bringing a Morrisons M local to Harrogate. We look forward to sharing our plans with the community.”

Harrogate’s HMV branch which escaped closure when the company went into administration in January 2013, will move into Mothercare’s current shop in Victoria Centre on Friday November 29.

Steve West, spokesperson for HMV said: “Our old store will be closing on Monday November 25. The new shop will have the same staffing levels and will continue with the same range of stock . Everything will be the same just moved up the road.”

Mr West would not disclose the reason behind the shops move but said: “These things happen in retail and in property and we have found a suitable location.

“We are very keen to stay in Harrogate, we have got a good customer base and will keep trading in the town for as long as we can.”

A Harrogate Mum has started a petition against the closure of the Mothercare in the Victoria Centre, which is due to shut it doors next Friday.

Maria Sibley started a petition to save the store and it attracted 200 signatures in four hours.

She said: “I have four children aged 20, 19, three and one and have shopped at Mothercare with all three of them.

“The staff are very good, it’s the advice and experience they give that you can’t get elsewhere.

“There will be nowhere in Harrogate to buy prams or big baby equipment now, you will have to drive to York or Leeds or order things online.”

She added: “It would be better for Mothercare to move to HMV’s old shop, not another supermarket.

“We have already got so many supermarkets, Tesco express, Asda, Waitrose and Marks and Spencer are already nearby and we have a Morrison’s in Harrogate already, to be honest I don’t think it will last.”

One mum who signed the petition, Sarah Jane, agreed that Harrogate does not need another supermarket.

She said: “I don’t understand it, Morrisons isn’t the type of shop you come to town centres for, it is not what you expect to see in Harrogate town centre. We don’t need it, I’m surprised it is allowed.”

Morrisons PLC have not had to apply to Harrogate Borough Council for planning permission for the Cambridge Road site as it is not classed as a change of use under national planning rules.

What do you think of the changes to Harrogate’s shops? Is Morrisons a good addition? Will Mothercare be missed?

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