Letter: Tourism - Better promotion of Royal Hall

The Royal Hall.
The Royal Hall.

Thank you for publishing my letter about filming in Harrogate. I sent it with some reservations because, while the idea has potential to bring great wealth to the town, whose best interests I always have in my heart, I would entirely understand if the good people of Harrogate were horrifed at the prospect of being inundated by yet more Americans.

I am, therefore, grateful to you for opening up the idea for correspondence, which I will follow with great interest and may contribute to from time to time.

As far as wealth generation is concerned, I would prefer this to be done by promotion of the Royal Hall, the only building of its kind in the country and so important that the Prince of Wales got involved in its restoration campaign.

It is scandalously undersold. As I go round town I talk to visitors and, last week, I met two ladies from South Shields who have been coming here for twelve years and had never heard of the building. I’m sure they know where Marks and Spencer is! I sometimes wonder if the people of Harrogate deserve the riches that surround them. I attended the recent concert given in the Royal Hall by the Black Dyke Brass Band, the foremost of its kind in the land (though that might be disputed by Grimethorpe), and, not only had they not opened up the circle (I don’t know the correct name), there were a handful of empty seats in the body of the hall. They could have sold that concert ten times and more if the right people had been aware of the event but the common man has long since seen the hall as the province of the rich and given up any interest in it.

Mark Woolley