New strategy aims to make Harrogate a “progressive and vibrant place to live, work and visit”

The new strategy aims to turn the Harrogate district into a progressive and vibrant place to live, work and visit.
The new strategy aims to turn the Harrogate district into a progressive and vibrant place to live, work and visit.

Harrogate Council has been giving more details about its ambitious plans to “transform” the borough over the next six years.

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The new strategy called “2024 Programme” aims to turn the Harrogate district into a “progressive and vibrant place to live, work and visit”.

It is due to come to fruition to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the creation of Harrogate Borough Council in 1974.

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In a written report to the council’s Cabinet, Chief Executive Wallace Sampson, said the strategy would focus on four key themes:

• Sustainable Harrogate – supporting economic growth and housing delivery.

• Destination Harrogate – promoting the district as a healthy and safe place to visit.

• Digital Harrogate – harnessing opportunities in digital technology, supported by improved marketing and communications.

• Commercial Harrogate – maximizing the council’s income-generating opportunities.

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The Council is setting aside £375,000 to help fulfil the strategy, but Mr Sampson said that (subject to the approval of the full council) this money can be found from savings the council had made in other areas.

Two new boards will be established, both under the chairmanship of Mr Sampson.

There will be a “Place” board with Trevor Watson, the council’s Director of Economy and Culture responsible for delivering on the sustainable theme .

Paul Campbell, Director of Community, will be responsible for Destination Harrogate.

There will also be a “Transformation” board with Rachel Bowles, Director of Corporate Affairs in charge of the digital brief.

Simon Kent, director of the Harrogate Convention Centre will lead the way in developing the council’s commercial agenda.

Each director is expected to ensure that all projects are delivered on time and within budget.

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The new 2024 Programme has grown out of a previous vision document, Our Strategy For Success, (OSFS) which was launched in 2016 and due to have been completed in 2020.

Mr Sampson acknowledged that more time was needed to deliver on a number of projects – not least generating more income from the council’s commercial activities.

He said OSFS had already delivered several significant achievements.

They included the completion of the council’s new office building in 2017 and the successful relocation of 500 council staff.