One of the world’s most prestigious restaurants may be about to create 125 jobs in Harrogate but it’s risking annoying some of its neighbours thanks to controversial signage.
Excitement was high when news broke that London’s famous celebrity haunt with its art deco surroundings was set to open in November, though its location on Parliament Street, just yards from Bettys tearooms, raised a few eyebrows.
The imminent arrival of this ‘big gun’ has also raised concerns with another of Harrogate’s well-known names in food and drink.
When it opens Monday to Sunday from 8am to 12.30am, The Ivy’s sign will say “The Ivy - Harrogate Brasserie.”
As a result, a long-standing bar-restaurant and hotel on Cheltenham Parade in Harrogate, also called Harrogate Brasserie, has contacted The Ivy to make its thoughts known.
Now owned by Timothy Taylors after 27 years under popular local couple Richard and Amanda Finney, Tim Dewey, chief executive of Timothy Taylor & Co Ltd told the Harrogate Advertiser he had some concerns.
He said: “While I welcome the addition of such a prestigious restaurant to the town, I do have a concern about the naming of the outlet as “The Ivy: Harrogate Brasserie.”
“This name may cause confusion amongst customers in Harrogate as well as impacting on the valuable goodwill built up over the past 27 years in the name “Harrogate Brasserie.”
“I have already written to the company on this basis, suggesting they make a slight adjustment to the name as they do not always call their outlets specifically after the town in which it is located.
“For example, in York their plan is to call their new restaurant the “St Helen’s Square, Brasserie.”
“On reflection, we trust the Ivy will see the sense in taking this approach in Harrogate.”
As for The Ivy, talking to the Harrogate Advertiser, they gave no hint of a compromise in this battle of signage.
Rodney Prosper, General Manager at The Ivy Collection Harrogate, said: “We are pleased that the local community is welcoming The Ivy Collection to Harrogate. Our restaurants have each come to be known and referred to locally as “The Ivy”, and we fully expect this to be the case in Harrogate.
“Our brasserie sub heading is merely a description of our location and all day dining service.”
Meanwhile, the good news for regulars at Harrogate Brasserie is that an 'old hand' at the restaurant is rejoining the team.
Francois Morillon, who was at the Brasserie with founder Richard Finney a few years ago is starting as the new general manager of Harrogate Brasserie.
He brings a wealth of experience in running quality outlets from his time spent at places such as the Orchid, Drum & Monkey and the Black Bull in Moulton.