Donate Twitter Facebook

Celebrating 25 years of service at Harrogate Community House

Celebrating 25 years of service at Harrogate Community House

Since opening in 1997 Harrogate Community House on East Parade has been the home of a wide range of charities and community groups, providing good quality reasonably priced office accommodation as well as meeting rooms and an information centre. The Mayor and Mayoress of the Harrogate District, Councillor Trevor Chapman and his wife Janet recently visited to find out more about the 15 current tenants and mark the 25th anniversary of our local hub for community action and volunteering.

Both East Parade itself and the 2 houses which form the main part of Community House were built by Richard Ellis, three times mayor in the 1880’s and also a farsighted developer of many of Harrogate’s finest buildings. He sold the new houses in 1889, with strict covenants included which stated they could not be used as tanneries, abattoirs, for the sale of liquor or as places of entertainment. Over the next hundred years there are records of a shop, a café and a car hire business on the premises, and latterly provision of health services.  

In the mid 90’s the NHS decided to sell the building and this coincided with a visionary group of volunteers looking for suitable premises in which to set up a community house to bring local charities together in good quality accommodation, as already seen in Kendal by the late Roy Bousfield, one of the founding trustees. They set about raising £300,000 to secure and develop the building and obtained one of the first National Lottery grants in Harrogate as well as many donations from businesses and individuals. 

The first charity to move in was the Little Red Bus community transport charity early in 1997 followed by Harrogate and District CVS (now HADCA) and then Open Country and Crossroads (now Tu Vida). Due to the demand from charities for office space and the need to improve access the annex and meeting rooms’ extension were skilfully added in 2001 and then in 2006 the reception area refurbished. 

In 2018 Harrogate Community House Trust decided to hand over the building to HADCA to take their vision forwards into the 21st century. From the start HADCA has always had an active role in the building, providing a friendly welcome on reception and offering information, advice and guidance to visitors and callers from all sectors.  The aim has always been to make it as easy as possible for charities to concentrate on doing what they do best and not have to worry about managing a property. HADCA continue to provide a reasonably priced, safe and pleasant working environment and demand for offices remains high, with just one small office available to let at present. After a break during the pandemic, meetings have now re-started and a wide range of groups returned for their classes, workshops and training session.

At the 25th anniversary event representatives from all the current tenants came along to explain the work of their organisations and their plans for the future. Support is provided far and wide from Harrogate Community House, ranging from very local to international, addressing issues such as homelessness, domestic abuse, loneliness and helping people stay active and well.

Chair of HADCA’s board of trustees thanked the Mayor for attending and Councillor Chapman thanked everyone for their support and vital work before cutting a 25th anniversary celebration cake which was enjoyed by all.

For more information about the offices and meeting rooms at Harrogate Community House ring 01423 503700 or visit