'Please visit us' - Harrogate charity's plea after taking just £3 in one day during roadworks

Horticap students Stephen Green, Mandy Shield, Alex Horner, Hannah Brown, Hannah Borlase, and Timothy Simpson. Picture: Gerard Binks.
Horticap students Stephen Green, Mandy Shield, Alex Horner, Hannah Brown, Hannah Borlase, and Timothy Simpson. Picture: Gerard Binks.

Much-loved Harrogate charity Horticap is urging residents to continue to visit their shop and tea room on Otley Road, after receiving just £3 in takings in one day amid the neighbouring roadworks

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Pictured from left: students Liam Dodds, Paul O'Brien, Karl Jameson and Carl Crooks. Picture: Gerard Binks.

Pictured from left: students Liam Dodds, Paul O'Brien, Karl Jameson and Carl Crooks. Picture: Gerard Binks.

The chairman of Horticap, Steve Scarre, said he estimates that the financial impact of the works over the two weeks could mean a loss of between £4,000 and £5,000 in total, if the situation doesn’t improve.

He said Horticap would usually expect to take around £300-£350 a day.

He said: “We rely on income from the sale of goods in our shop and tea room, but we’ve had no passing trade because we’ve had no passing traffic. The roadworks are causing deadlock in Harrogate, it’s not a good situation. I understand that the road needs doing, but we could have had more notice, and it could have been managed better.

“The financial situation has been absolutely dreadful. To your readers I would say, please continue to come up - please be insistent. If you are stopped down the road, be insistent that you are going to Horticap. There is an arrangement if anybody wants to go to Horticap to get in, and the contractors have been helpful in the main.”

Hannah Etchells pictured in the greenhouse. Picture: Gerard Binks.

Hannah Etchells pictured in the greenhouse. Picture: Gerard Binks.

Executive member for highways at North Yorkshire County Council, Coun Don Mackenzie, said: “I am very mindful of the effect which the road closure is having on this very worthy charity. If there were a way to carry out this major road repair without a road closure we would do it.

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"The closure is necessary in order to allow our contractor to do the work properly and in safety. The work on this first stage of the Otley Road scheme is on schedule and it is expected that we can reopen the road by next Monday.

“I have spoken with Steve Scarre at the start of these roadworks and fully understand the position in which Horticap find themselves. Their location is at the midpoint in the resurfacing works being carried out on Otley Road, and whilst NYCC contractors will assist visitors with access to Horticap, as they are doing too for Harlow Carr gardens, I do recognise that some potential customers may be dissuaded from making the journey.

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"The county council is responding to requests from residents, business leaders and the general travelling public to make proper, lasting repairs.”