From the discovery of an unusual series of springs in the 16th and 17th centuries, to the modern-day popular spa, shopping and conference town we see today, Harrogate’s heritage is renowned both nationwide and internationally.

The North Yorkshire town has been a fashionable destination across centuries, with visitors travelling from far and wide to come and see the Tewit Well, first discovered by William Slingsby in 1571, or the Old Sulphur Well, covered by historic Royal Pump Room. More than 80 springs have been found across Harrogate over centuries, with past medical experts praising their ability to resolve health issues including infertility and mental health problems.

The Stray, used by hundreds of people every day to get their daily exercise or take their dog for a walk, was created in the 1770s to protect the famous springs. It remains one of our town’s best-known landmarks, with 200 acres of grassland giving a unique, spacious feel to visitors and residents.

During the 1980s, Harrogate then became a popular exhibition and conference town, with the launch of the Harrogate Convention Centre – home to many exciting events across the year from the BIGGA Turf Management Exhibition to a Christmas and Gift Fair. These events attract worldwide visitors, helping to put Harrogate on the map and offer a cosmopolitan flavour.

The town’s floral heritage is brought to light every year as visitors come from afar to see the cherry blossom trees on The Stray – which has been named as one of the best spots in the UK to see them. This floral history is also celebrated during both the Harrogate Floral Summer of Celebration and the Harrogate Flower Shows.

Retail and residential developments are happening all the time as the town’s offer continues to expand, with both national and independents filling busy shopping areas such as James Street, Beulah Street and the Victoria Shopping Centre and new homes under construction, including the Trinity House in the former River Island premises in Cambridge Street, as well as positive signs now being signalled in the former Debenhams unit on Parliament Steet.

The latest addition to our heritage is the creation of the North Yorkshire Council authority – with the potential of a new Harrogate Town Council – and the introduction of a new York and North Yorkshire Mayor. These changes within local government will help to shape our town’s future as we move further into the 21st century.

As the Business Improvement District (BID), we want to be an important part of this town’s future and contribute positively as it continues to shine as the jewel in North Yorkshire’s crown. We have plenty of campaigns, projects and events coming up throughout the rest of the year and our second term, so be sure to keep an eye out for them!

If you have any further questions, or would like to offer any feedback, please contact the BID team on