Plans to develop a new Regional Agricultural Centre at the Great
Yorkshire Showground in Harrogate have been given the go-ahead.
The application by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society for the £4.5m
centre has been unanimously approved by Harrogate Borough Council
and work is expected to begin in mid 2008.
An artist’s impression of the new Centre
Nigel Pulling, the Society’s Chief Executive said: “We
are delighted at the news which means we can now progress this
important project. This is an extremely exciting time for us as
the new building will provide a much needed focus for agriculture
in the region and be a flagship for the industry.”
The 1,716m² Centre will be situated on the south side of the
250 acre showground and will consist of a farm shop with an 80-seater
café and office space.
The Society is a charity and is best known as the organiser of
the Great Yorkshire Show and this month’s Countryside Live.
It is anticipated that the build will take about 12 months to be
completed in phases, but, because of the position of the site,
neither of the shows, nor the many events which take place on the
showground year round will be affected.
“We will now work on finalising the details of the building
with our architects and then move on to a tendering process,” added
The Society’s office staff will re-locate to the new building
along with other not-for-profit rural organisations. The shop will
promote locally sourced food as a priority, providing an extra
outlet for local farmers and producers as well as additional choice
of good quality local fare for shoppers.
The café design will enable cookery demonstrations and food
launches to be staged, further highlighting the important role
played in food production by farmers – a key objective of
A permissive cycle path and a foot path will be created, and the
Society has agreed that Harrogate Borough Council can develop a
park and ride scheme on one of the showground fields.
Sustainable principles have been incorporated in the plan to ensure
the building has the minimum impact on the environment, and it
has been designed to be heat efficient. Wherever possible re-cycled
materials and natural products will be used. The farm shop and
café will have a “green” sedum roof and a biomass
boiler will be used for any additional heating.
The design has been created by P+HS Architects which has offices
in Leeds and Stokesley. Managing Director, Chris Potter said, “We're
delighted to be moving forward with this project. The scheme, won
in an invited competition, has great regional and sustainable importance
and we are looking forward to bringing innovative solutions to
the development not seen before in the area.”
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