Letter: Events - Let the Stray reach its potential

The Stray, Harrogate.
The Stray, Harrogate.

I support Peter Whiteley’s letter (Advertiser, May 11) calling for protection but not a blanket ban on all events on the Stray.

I was dismayed last year when Harrogate Council abandoned the loosening of the straightjacket that is the Stray Act. In its present form the Stray is a boring flat expanse of grass with little to attract visitors for most of the year. It’s an opportunity wasted.

The Stray is big enough to allow small events all the time in different places without affecting the tranquility in other parts. It would be perfect for occasional large scale events that might help Harrogate throw off its stuffy and backward looking image.

We need more permitted cycle routes and I would like to see an area set aside for occasional large event parking - this could be an underground car park or on the surface using hollow blocks that give hard standing but allow grass to grow through them, as used by the National Trust.

Let’s see the Stray reach its potential. Is Harrogate capable of such imaginative thinking?

Philip Purkis