Christmas market criticised over "lack of festive atmosphere"

The market last year

The market last year

First published in News St Albans & Harpenden Review: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

St Albans Christmas market has been criticised for having a "lack of festive atmosphere".

It is estimated that 45,000 people visited the 24-day market in 2013, which was launched for the very first time in November. More than 87 per cent of chalet days were sold.

However late planning, problems with the Vintry Garden site, poor chalet decoration and lack of entertainment and festive atmosphere were some of the weaknesses highlighted in feedback. 

Many city centre retailers reported an increase in footfall and trade and there was positive feedback from the majority of exhibitors, with most saying they would return this year.

St Albans District Council is seeking ideas on how to improve this year's German inspired market, following a public services scrutiny committee meeting on Thursday, March 6.

Councillor Chris White, chairman of the committee, said: "It is clear from the feedback that a positive start was made with this year’s first St Albans Christmas Market.  It is also clear that the team has learned many lessons.

"The committee wants to see a boost to the market this year with more stalls accommodated in a wider area. 

"We also want to see lots more entertainment to create a better Christmas atmosphere. If anyone has ideas for developing the Christmas Market for the future, we would like to hear from them."

Residents can give their views by contacting scrutiny@stalbans.gov.uk or  01727 819529.

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