Harry’s Place – One year on from the One Show Big Thank you

David English, Co-owner of Harry’s Place CIC Ballynahinch, reflects on the business’ Journey and its successes.

Harry’s Place, Community Interest Company (CIC), appeared on BBC’s One Show in February 2022. A year on, with the publicity placing the Ballynahinch café on the map, co-owner David English revealed, “It’s certainly increased our footfall and our customer base…it’s got the word out about what we’re all about…it’s highlighted that we support learning disability.”

Harry’s Place CIC describes themselves as ‘Empowering those with Learning Disability socially, creatively, economically, sustainably, in a safe and encouraging environment within the local community, playing a full and equal part in that community.’ David co-owns the business with Gareth Little.

David stated, “We built this ourselves, from the ground up, and it’s been helped along with parents, volunteers…”

The business is gaining increasing recognition from political figures, as well as receiving Social Enterprise Northern Ireland awards in October. “Sometimes,” he added, “because we work here all the time…it’s not until people actually tell us how well we’re doing, and the impact it’s making on lives, you really start to appreciate that.”

Since being featured on the One Show Big Thank You, David and his colleagues have been busy running the café, as well as working on new projects. They are also searching for a bigger venue for the café. “The biggest challenge is we are outgrowing our space at the moment,” he said, “Every week we have parents and carers coming in to ask if we have any placements for their son, daughter…we are just running out of spaces.”

David English, Co-owner, Harry’s Place CIC

With the business celebrating its second birthday, David reflected, “We never knew what it was going to look like from the start…it’s things like the One Show and recognition that we’ve got through different awards, we kind of realised we’ve built something here which we’re very proud of.”

To find out more about Harry’s Place CIC, visit their Facebook page:

Harry’s Place CIC | Ballynahinch | Facebook