Harrogate Climbing Centre recently opened its doors to the public for the first time. The state of the art Entre-Prises built wall is the brain child of John Dunne, owner and operator of the Manchester Climbing Centre, which celebrates its fifth anniversary this month. John is well known as one of the strongest climbers in the UK, with an enviable list of hard first ascents to his name, including Divided Years, Total Eclipse, New Statesman and Partheon shot, all of which are still considered major modern test pieces.
As a local lad, John developed and honed his talent on the Yorkshire gritstone outcrops, and has always wanted to bring a facility like HCC to Yorkshire, to help other young aspirants develop their abilities.
We caught up with John shortly after the centre opened, and this is what he had to say: “I wanted to bring Yorkshire's premier climbing centre to the heart of Yorkshire's best climbing; so when I found the perfect building just south of Harrogate town centre, I jumped at the chance of turning it into a modern climbing facility. Only ten minutes drive from Almscliffe on a rainy weekend, the focus of Harrogate Climbing Centre is to provide for climbers and boulderers of all levels. We have applied all the lessons we have learnt from our experience at the Manchester centre, and used them to develop a climbing wall you'd have to travel a long way to beat”
Boasting sixty-six climbing lines of all angles, from beginners slabs to complex concave/convex sections, the centre is completed by an impressive mosaic wall crafted by the Kelbrook based Entre-Prises. There is also a Rockshop on-site, run in association with Outside as well as a café serving coffee and cakes for those between-climb refuelling stops.