OPINION: Fuel prices may be sky high, but there’s still things you can do for free - Your Harrogate presenter Nick Hancock

A bit of personal news for you.
22nd June 2021
Harrogate Rambling Feature.
Pictured Fewston Reservoir
Picture Gerard Binks22nd June 2021
Harrogate Rambling Feature.
Pictured Fewston Reservoir
Picture Gerard Binks
22nd June 2021 Harrogate Rambling Feature. Pictured Fewston Reservoir Picture Gerard Binks

Today is my wife’s birthday. I won’t say how old and she’ll kill me but she’s 40 next April.

Anyway I have promised my wife a very extravagant and expensive present... a tank of petrol!

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I wish I was joking but as a regular Harrogate commuter I now get a funny feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I have to go and fill my car up with diesel.

It now costs me £90 to fill my little car up. Eek!

Sadly, that’s not it... my mortgage has gone up, I’ve just had a lovely ax bill from my friends at HMRC, the water is up, electricity and don’t mention the gas (despite the fact that my other friend Dee bought me a log burner last year) even the price of milk is rocketing!

However, I am all about finding the positives in any situation.

My glass is not half full or half empty... I am just pleased I have a glass!

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So having given this some thought I have come up with three things you can do for free if you live in Harrogate.


Oh my goodness we are blessed in Harrogate with so many beautiful places to walk or run around with our family and friends. Last week I met a friend and her unruly dog (sorry to everyone else by the way) at Valley Gardens and we walked up through the Pine Woods to Harlow Carr.

To be honest it was so busy it felt like half of Harrogate had the same idea!

You can’t beat a 10k run around Fewston so long as there is no snow.

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Now I have a dog I can even coax my kids out the house to walk around the Great Yorkshire showground or the Castle Top in Knaresborough on a Saturday morning.

All of this costs nowt by the way.

People Watch

Once again this is totally free and Harrogate is the best place in the world to people watch.

You can do this ‘sport’ anywhere from the West Park restaurant to TKMaxx to the spa at Rudding Park.

Are they married?

Or is he her father?!

Do they really need to drive a Landrover Defender when they live in central Harrogate?

Is she wearing leather trousers for a bet?

Why is he wearing such bright red trousers?

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You can take this to a whole new level by “eaves dropping” on some great gossip by walking slowly past Weetons or moving slowly between tables at La Feria.

Smile and say hello to people

Not only is this one absolutely free but it makes you feel good!

It also gives you the chance to brighten someone else’s day and nothing feels better than creating a random act of kindness.

When I see that person in Waitrose or the Victoria Shopping centre who looks like they’re having the day from hell I always say “good morning” or if I’m not feeling chatty I will always smile.

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It can get you beaten up in London but I find it goes down well round here.

As Martin Lewis is now unable to offer any money saving advice I thought I would give you a bonus final thing you can do for free...

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