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Harrogate Guide. Events and Festivals

Art Galleries

Art Galleries

Beningbrough Gallery & Gardens – Click Here to visit website

Beningbrough Hall York N Yorkshire YO30 1DD – Phone – 01904 472027

With over eight acres of formal gardens to explore, relax among the flowers or see how the fruit collection is coming along in the two acre walled garden. Each area tends to be at its best at a different time of the year and watching the season change is often a reason to return time after time.

The internationally acclaimed garden designer Andy Sturgeon has created a design that will be slowly introduced to enhance aspects of the landscape at Beningbrough.


The second exciting and most significant development to date for Beningbrough’s garden transformation was completed in spring 2018; planted to Chelsea standards and creating an instant garden. Wisteria ‘Alba’ grows over oak beams and is underplanted with bulbs, flowering shrubs and topiary. The south facing wall makes it the perfect spot to sit for a moment and soak in the sunshine.

The walled garden

A stroll around Beningbrough’s walled garden will take you through the historic pear arch, by the vines in the greenhouse and all the other growing produce. Over 90 varieties of fruit are grown here on 170 trees and shrubs. A wide range of vegetables are cultivated using traditional methods in two acres of enclosed kitchen garden. Harvested produce is used in the restaurant adding to the flavours on the menu.

Bulbs, blossom and wildflowers

Where possible, the gardens work to help wildlife thrive. 300,000 bulbs emerge in spring along the ha-ha overlooking the south parkland. As the carpets fade the area is left to naturalise with vetches, clovers and buttercups. Beyond the ha-ha, the American garden is a haven for wildlife, at its best with spring magnolia blooms and autumn colour. Until the Mediterranean plan continues, this area is sown with wildflowers and the summer impact is proving as popular with visitors as it is with insects.

Art Galleries


Mercer Art Gallery – Click Here to visit the website

Swan Road Harrogate North Yorkshire HG1 2SA – Phone – 01423 556188

The Mercer Art Gallery opened in 1991 in the 200 year old Harrogate Promenade Rooms, one of Harrogate’s first purpose built spa buildings.

In the Georgian period, more and more visitors flocked to Harrogate to take the ‘Harrogate Cure’, drinking and bathing in the town’s mineral waters. The Promenade Rooms provided an indoor space where visitors could socialise, opening on the 16th June 1806 with ‘some select pieces of music on the organ’. Well-to-do visitors could see and be seen: chatting to fellow well-drinkers, showing off their fashionable clothing and perhaps even looking for romance.

In 1839 the Promenade Rooms was renamed the Victoria Reading Rooms and Library, and used for public meetings and lectures. In 1875 – 1900 it became a theatre, hosting many Victorian celebrities such as Lily Langtry, Sarah Bernhardt and Oscar Wilde. Later it became the Town Hall, and in the 1980s it was the rates and housing benefits office until it was reborn as the Mercer Art Gallery.

The Mercer replaced the first Harrogate Art Gallery that had opened in 1930 in a single room of a first-floor extension to Harrogate Library. As early as the 1950s there was talk of relocating the expanding art collection. A crisis point for the District’s art collection was reached in 1984 when several paintings from the collection were found lying in the flooded basement of the Royal Baths, so in 1985 work began on plans for a splendid new art gallery.

The gallery’s name comes from the water-colourist Sidney Agnew Mercer who lived most of his life in Yorkshire, whose sons gave £50,000 towards the new art gallery. Other magnificent funds came from the hard work of the Friends of the Mercer Art Gallery, English Heritage and Harrogate Borough Council.

Works from the Harrogate Fine Art Collection  on Art UK, the online home for art from every public collection in the United Kingdom.

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Art Galleries

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