Fodder, Harrogate, North Yorkshire

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Fodder. That name seems to conjure up thoughts of feeding cattle on a rural farm, perhaps hay or kale or silage. Agricultural, steady, purposeful, playing its part in sustaining the food chain we all rely upon. So, quite an appropriate name for one of the country’s leading farm shops celebrating local produce, linked directly to local farmers and their supply chain.

The Yorkshire Agricultural Society has its base in Harrogate, just off the the Wetherby Road going south from the town. Their site has a range of buildings and facilities used throughout the year for events – the Harrogate Flower Show, for example – but the big event is the Great Yorkshire Show – “England’s Premier Agricultural Show”. Full of tractors and rabbits, with a few cows and associated milling machines thrown in. No really, the computer-controlled milking is astonishing…

The site itself, whilst a great base for the activities, had buildings which were uninspiring, just functional really without any character. They didn’t do justice to the quality of the events and certainly couldn’t be used to promote the business. Enter Heather Parry and Nigel Pulling with a vision. Firstly, they ran an invited architectural competition to design a new farm shop, offices and café to be the first phase of a new strategy for the whole site, with the emphasis on sustainability – not just the buildings but the whole of the agricultural industry. Won by architects P+HS, the building is a winner of many, many awards, and the building is bursting at the seams and looks set to expand both on site and in other locations [in Yorkshire obvs]. Even the furniture in the café was designed and made locally by Design in Wood.

Welcome to Fodder, the showcase for the showground site. From tentative first steps…

what do we do with all these left-over cauliflowers in the shop – oh, let’s make soup for the café – eureka!

…the business is thriving. Be prepared to queue for the café at any time. It’s worth it. Excellent food [Yorkshire portions], all prepared in the kitchens, using local produce from named suppliers. The shop celebrates local excellence – all tested and approved; apparently the architect had to test all the beers in display…

Next steps in the site’s redevelopment is the new exhibition centre.

Food shop and café Fodder Harrogate

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One response to “Fodder, Harrogate, North Yorkshire

  1. Pingback: Roots, East Rounton, North Yorkshire | sleep | eat | enjoy·

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