Take peek be­hind front doors in the in­te­ri­ors cap­i­tal of the North

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY -

re­tail­ing for around £4,000 but there is no short­age of money in the town or coming in from out­side.

Cus­tomers al­ready travel from across York­shire, from foot­ballers wives ter­ri­tory in Cheshire, the af­flu­ent Rib­ble Val­ley in Lan­cashire and the most ex­clu­sive ar­eas of the North East. Many com­bine their trips with a week­end break.

“We are see­ing a lot of that and part of our plan is to en­cour­age peo­ple to stay and make a day or week­end of it. We hope to en­cour­age peo­ple to make use of the ho­tels and restau­rants,” says Stephen.

Vis­i­tors to the town will find that all in­te­rior tastes are catered for. Har­ro­gate has the only branch of OKA in the North of Eng­land. The store, beloved by the home coun­ties set, is owned by Sa­man­tha Cameron’s mother Lady Annabel As­tor. There are a num­ber of kitchen spe­cial­ists in­clud­ing Stephen Neall and Chantry along with na­tional com­pa­nies like Small­bone and John Lewis of Hunger­ford. Har­ro­gate In­te­ri­ors and Ras­mus spe­cialise in con­tem­po­rary fur­ni­ture and if you want clas­sic con­tem­po­rary or coun­try style then James Brind­ley, Richard HAR­RO­GATE is the UK’s hap­pi­est town, ac­cord­ing to prop­erty web­site Right­move.

Re­searchers quizzed 40,000 peo­ple on 12 dif­fer­ent fac­tors such as neigh­bourli­ness, safety, ameni­ties, cost and the amount of space they have in their home, and the spa town came top.

Sec­ond hap­pi­est was Stock­port, whose post­code Grafton, which has re­cently ex­panded to cope with de­mand, and Woods of Har­ro­gate are among those that can oblige.

Soft fur­nish­ings shops are abun­dant and in­clude the re­cently opened Fab­ric and Co., whose stock in­cludes fab­rics from lo­cal de­sign­ers like Wil­liam Wat­son-West. area en­com­passes Alder­ley Edge, which sits in Cheshire’s stock­bro­ker belt and is known as premier­ship foot­baller ter­ri­tory

Over­all, peo­ple liv­ing in the North are hap­pier than those liv­ing in the South, ac­cord­ing to the sur­vey.

The un­hap­pi­est places to live were East Lon­don, Croy­don and East Cen­tral Lon­don.

In­ter­est­ing ac­ces­sories can be found at Lime Lace, which has a com­bi­na­tion of vin­tage and mod­ern pieces, in­clud­ing etched glass­ware from lo­cal maker Vine­gar and Brown Pa­per. Co­coonU is an­other trea­sure trove with ev­ery­thing from cash­mere throws to ce­ram­ics, many by small-scale de­signer mak­ers.

If you want some­thing to hang on the walls, then gal­leries are also a growth mar­ket in Har­ro­gate and in­clude 108 Fine Art, which stocks artists such as Joash Woodrow, Ni­cholas Jolly and Alan Davie, and the Work­house Gallery, which is stag­ing a Street Art ex­hi­bi­tion.

It’s all a far cry from the days when an­tique shops were the town’s big­gest re­tail at­trac­tion. Peo­ple used to come here for the an­tiques but that mar­ket has changed.

“Peo­ple come here for the great in­te­ri­ors shops now and they are a lot more fash­ion ori­en­tated. They like to mix old and new pieces”, says Chris Holmes, of Chris Holmes Dec­o­ra­tive In­te­ri­ors, which spe­cialises in dec­o­ra­tive an­tiques and the more un­usual the bet­ter.

Cus­tomers come from all over Bri­tain and be­yond to his shop on Cold Bath Road, which stocks ev­ery­thing from me­dieval carv­ings to his lat­est ac­qui­si­tion, a col­lec­tion of an­tique mir­rors from a coun­try house in Ire­land.

“Sales are go­ing through the roof,” says Chris. “Peo­ple like the town and en­joy find­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent. The in­de­pen­dent in­te­ri­ors shops here of­fer good qual­ity and er­vice and that really counts for a lot.” WORK has started on two of five new lux­ury homes, start­ing at £1.5m, at Ful­with Mill, Har­ro­gate.

The four to seven bed­room prop­er­ties by Zam­mitt Homes will boast an A rated en­ergy per­for­mance cer­tifi­cate and heat­ing bills are pre­dicted to be vir­tu­ally zero thanks to a host of eco features, in­clud­ing so­lar pan­els, high grade in­su­la­tion and low emis­siv­ity glass. En­ergy bills for tra­di­tional houses of this size would typ­i­cally be £5,000 to £10,000 a year.

Buy­ers of three of the homes will be al­lowed a hand in the de­sign and can re­quest ad­di­tions in­clud­ing a swim­ming pool. An open week­end is be­ing held on April 27 to 28, hosted by Bead­nall Co­p­ley, tel 01423 503500 for an ap­point­ment. THE Government’s Help to Buy scheme could be avail­able to al­most ev­ery street in York­shire, ac­cord­ing to anal­y­sis by Deloitte Real Es­tate.

The £5.4bn package is de­signed to help peo­ple get on the hous­ing lad­der by mak­ing fund­ing and guar­an­tees avail­able for pur­chases up to the value of £600,000.

How­ever, the North-South di­vide in prop­erty prices means that £600,000 thresh­old cov­ers a far greater per­cent­age of prop­er­ties in York­shire than it does in the South East. Help to Buy in­cludes a scheme start­ing in April 2014 to lend bor­row­ers up to 20 per cent of the value of a new build home, while the other pro­vides a mort­gage guar­an­tee for those small de­posits and is set to be launched in Jan­uary.

SIT­TING TAR­GET: A Carmel sofa from Po­liform North, £3,858 plus VAT, top; above from left, fab­rics from Fab­ric and Co., Har­ro­gate; a Cheese stool, £306 plus VAT; and a Con­corde ta­ble £2,585 plus VAT

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