Letter: Free rental of Valley Gardens to continue
I read the article in the newspaper last week where a member of the public berated the council for banning local charity and community events in the Valley Gardens during the summer months. I am pleased to say that this is not the case. The situation remains as it has been for many years and there has not been any proposal to change it or any discussion about doing so.
Administration fees - including those for security concerns in public places - will continue to be charged at a rate below that of the costs incurred by the council, starting at £100. We will continue to support local charity and community events through doing this work below cost.
I can also announce that the free rental of the Valley Gardens for charity events and voluntary groups will continue as per previous years despite the income to the council from Government via the Rate Support Grant decreasing and the borough council planning to levy a council tax increase significantly lower than the inflation rate.
Doing the paperwork for a nominal fee and allowing free rental of council land for community and local charity groups is our way of thanking those groups for the invaluable work they do. That has always been the case and there are not, and never have been, any plans to change that approach.
Coun Richard Cooper
Leader of Harrogate Borough Council