WATCH: Stunning view of improving picture on West Park Stray


Last updated Jul 31, 2020

West Park Stray appears lush and green after the grass was mowed for the first time since work began in spring.

However, anyone hoping to take advantage of the warm weather this weekend and enjoy the newly-mown grass will have to look elsewhere.

Harrogate Borough Council said an announcement about the reopening of West Park Stray will be made in the coming days, but for now, it remains fenced off.

A drone image of West Park Stray taken today, July 31, by David Simister.

Work to restore the Stray began at the end of April, with Lancashire-based Glendale Services appointed to carry out the work under ‘urgent circumstances’. The organisers of the fan park for the UCI Road World Championships last September, when the damage was done, have agreed to pay £35,500 towards £130,000 of work.

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The council said that sum was not purely for repairs following the UCI event, but comprised repair to other long-standing issues:

  • £38,105 for repairs to grassed areas of West Park Stray
  • £65,385 for pavement, footpaths, Heras fencing, bedding and verge repairs, reinstatement of bins and benches plus any additional council work
  • £20,156 to fix longstanding drainage issues
  • £6,325 project management and delivery costs

When seeding began in late June, scarecrows created by local primary school children were put up across the Stray to protect the grass.

Harrogate's Stray in March 2020

The Stray was still showing extensive damage in March


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The project is titled Beyond Nature. Plots will be rented out to young farmers and anyone under 40 with an interest in farm ownership.

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