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£15m bid to transform Harrogate’s Grove House into care home approved

A £15 million transformation of Harrogate’s Grove House into a major new care home and community facility has finally been approved.

Grove House, a grade two listed building opposite the fire station on Skipton Road, was the home of Victorian inventor, philanthropist and mayor Samson Fox. It was later used as a hospital during the First World War and as the headquarters of the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes.

Harrogate’s Graeme Lee, chief executive of Springfield Healthcare, bought the six-acre site from the Buffaloes for more than £3m in 2017.

Graeme Lee in front of Grove House

Plans were submitted five years ago to create what Mr Lee calls “the holy grail of care”, combining high quality facilities for residents with extensive community use.

Now, after a lengthy planning process, North Yorkshire Council has published a decision notice approving the application, subject to conditions.

It means Grove House can undergo extensive conversion work to create a care home consisting of 24 flats. In addition, a 62-bed care home and eight houses providing supported living for over-65s will be built on land alongside Grove House.

How the site will look

An aerial view of the site

Grove House, which is hidden from traffic on Skipton Road, has stood derelict for years.

Talking about the project last year, Mr Lee said schoolchildren from nearby Grove Road Community Primary School will be invited to participate in activities alongside residents and use the gardens for study and play, and the site would also host an annual garden party for the community.

He said it would become “one of the best examples of developing relationships between older people and young people in the UK”.

Mr Lee’s company already owns seven care homes, including Harcourt Gardens in Harrogate.