Plans have been revealed for a local traders’ market in Scarborough town centre on the run-up to Christmas.
Following a lacklustre response to last year’s “Bavarian Market”, which was bought in from East Yorkshire, Scarborough shopkeepers are now being offered the chance to have a festive stall of their own.
Scarborough Council’s investment manager Nick Taylor said that it will be an opportunity for local traders to get involved and increase their business.
He added: “As a result of comments from local businesses and their desire to have a greater involvement, we are going to encourage retailers to trade directly in front of their shops.”
Traders will have the chance to hire stalls and canopies at cost price so they can display their seasonal lines to their best advantage.
Mr Taylor told The Scarborough News: “The response has been brilliant. Everyone I’ve been to see has been very positive about it.
“It’s going to be totally local this year and it’s shaping up to be a good Christmas, with footfall up on last year.”
The idea has also been well received by the Scarborough Chamber of Commerce. President Janet Jefferson said: “We totally approve of the use of local traders and we’re very much involved with it.
“It will be good for businesses and it will also create more of a community feel than last year.”
Cllr Jefferson added: “A lot of people complained last year because they didn’t know what was going in front of their shop.
“I think what’s happening this year will give people the best chance of having a successful Christmas.
“We always welcome competition and different traders, but Christmas needs to be special and it needs to be about the local community.”
In addition to the Christmas Market, a number of other events are set to take place as Christmas draws closer.
Father Christmas is due to arrive by fishing boat at Scarborough harbour at 11am on Saturday November 16.
This annual event always attracts hundreds of people as families flock to get their first glimpse of Santa before he is taken up to his grotto at Boyes.
Then on Sunday November 24, a Christmas Lights Party will be held in the town centre.
There will be a programme of music throughout the day and a parade will begin at 4pm, with the lights coming on gradually.
Mr Taylor explained: “We’re getting lots of community groups involved, who are encouraged to wear festive dress.
“We’re looking for people to get in touch from schools, clubs, Scouts or other groups to if they’d like to take part.
“All ages can get involved - the more the merrier!”
Cllr Jefferson added: “We’re looking forward to it all and encouraging everybody to get involved. It’s all about getting the community together.”
To find out more, please call Mr Taylor on 07967 465377 or email email@example.com
During the weekends following the switch-on event, alongside the local festive stalls, there will be music and entertainment in the town centre.
Plus, to encourage shoppers to come into town rather than travelling elsewhere, there will be free parking in council-owned car parks during late-night shopping on Thursdays from 3pm (dates to be confirmed) and every Sunday in December.