Recently voted the happiest place to live in the UK, Harrogate is booming in the 50th Anniversary year of Harrogate International Festivals’ rich history. Home to Bettys Tea Rooms, the Turkish Baths, and the beautiful Valley Gardens, we are proud of where we live. Back in 1982, the town hosted the Eurovision Song Contest at the newly-opened Harrogate International Centre, following a win the previous year by Bucks Fizz. We are delighted that HIC is now one of the venues used to stage concerts in our annual programme.
Going back even further, crime writer Agatha Christie was discovered in the Old Swan Hotel in 1926, after she mysteriously disappeared from her Surrey Home, and it is fitting that the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival is now held at this historic venue.
For the last 50 years, Harrogate International Festivals has been part of the social fabric of the Harrogate District. From our early beginnings in 1966 to the present day, we offer hundreds of events in our wide and varied programme, and millions of opportunities to read about Harrogate through our national partnerships. We are passionate about making the arts accessible to everyone, and keep our love of Harrogate at the heart of everything we do. From literature to crime, history to our pioneering Salon North, there is something to suit every cultural palette.
Looking beyond the Festivals, Harrogate has a Cathedral City, a Spa town, historic market towns, a World Heritage Site and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty all within a few short miles of each other, Harrogate is the perfect destination to host the ‘Home of Festivals’.