Decision details

Relocation of Harrogate Tourist Information Centre

Decision Maker: Executive Member for Open to Business

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


That Harrogate Tourist Information Centre will move from a standalone unit located at Royal Baths, Crescent Rd, Harrogate, to a co-location within the Royal Pump Rooms Museum, located at Crown Place, Harrogate - approximately 150metres away.

Reasons for the decision:

• This change will enable longer, more reliable opening hours (an additional 15 hours of TIC service per week) and also reduce staffing demand, which will enable more efficient use of resource and reduce lone working, which improves staff safety.
• Harrogate TIC has experienced reduced numbers of visitors in recent years. This is in line with national trends and changes in the way customers access tourism information, with more use of digital content and mobile devices to access information. The centre typically attracted around 135,000 visitors pre-Covid in 2019, dropping to 68,000 last year. However, it is a priority to continue to offer a face to face service in addition to digital, and this move will enable us to continue the provision, with additional benefits and improvements as stated.
• Visitor insight data suggests that a large number of visitors visit both sites, with 65% of those visiting the Pump Room Museum also visiting the TIC on the same trip.
• It is common in other parts of the County for TIC facilities to be located within visitor attractions, rather than at standalone sites. Craven Museum in Skipton recently underwent a major refurbishment and now incorporates both a TIC function and services for visitors alongside the museum front of house. This has resulted in an increase in visitors to both service areas.

Alternative options considered:

Option one: No Change

To maintain the status quo was not considered an efficient use of resources and unless additional staffing resource were allocated would continue to result in difficulties in staffing leading to occasions when the site was closed at short notice and/or periods of lone working.

Option 2: close the site (and not relocate)

This is not recommended. Whilst visitor numbers are declining, it is felt important to maintain face to face access to the service to support tourism within the area and to provide services for those who are unable or prefer not to use digital services.

Publication date: 14/02/2024

Date of decision: 14/02/2024