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The decision to cancel England’s longest-running Christmas market was made due to concerns about public safety, following the event’s huge success last year.
In 2022, an unprecedented number of 320,000 individuals attended the annual Lincoln Christmas Market, coinciding with its 40th anniversary as the nation’s longest-running holiday market.
The annual four-day festival typically includes performers, singing groups, and colorful light displays.
However, authorities ultimately opted to cancel the event for this year due to concerns about the high number of individuals in the confined space of the city center, which could potentially create a crowded and uncomfortable atmosphere for attendees.
The council has decided to host various holiday events in the downtown area, including an ice trail event this upcoming weekend.
However, the choice made earlier this year has sparked anger among the residents and merchants of the city.
Conservative MP Karl McCartney of the city has entered the debate, denouncing the Labour-controlled council’s actions as “cultural and economic destruction”.
On December 2nd, a Facebook post stated that in one week, the Lincoln Christmas Market would be in full swing. However, the city council, which is controlled by the Labour Party, abruptly shut down the market without any public knowledge. This decision was made without consideration for the negative effects it would have on the community and local businesses, potentially harming their incomes, employment opportunities, and the city’s image.
He previously stated that the city council’s decision not only harmed employment opportunities, businesses, and charitable organizations, but also negatively impacted the city’s reputation on a national level. Many are appalled by their actions, which are seen as destructive to our cultural and economic well-being.
There was growing frustration directed at the city council last week, as they voted against a proposal to reinstate the market for the upcoming year.
Christian Meggitt, the owner of Roly’s Fudge Pantry, informed The Independent that he acquired the store in 2021 after considering various factors such as the revenue generated from the yearly Christmas market.
He stated that the cancellation required him to seek alternative methods of providing for his family, such as launching a new store in Whitby, which was 100 miles away.
According to him, the Christmas market from last year provided enough income to sustain them until the city became busy again in January, February, and March. However, this year, he has had to find alternative ways to make up for the loss of income, which has been quite frustrating.
He stated, “The previous year was hectic, mainly due to the cancellation of Leeds and an overwhelming number of visitors on Saturday.”
“Regrettably, the Covid pandemic has highlighted to councils the potential cost savings of not hosting events. I believe this decision is driven by financial considerations rather than safety concerns. This has caused discontent among many individuals.”
Councillor Ric Metcalfe, the leader of the city council, stated that the cancellation was announced earlier this year due to the overwhelming success of 2022. The large number of people in a limited space over a brief period of time has caused discomfort.
In a statement given to The Independent, he explained that there may be some individuals who are disappointed by the end of the Lincoln Christmas Market. The decision to discontinue the event was made nine months ago due to concerns about public safety.
During the Christmas season, Lincoln is a beautiful destination to explore. The city center is adorned with twinkling lights and there are various festive events, such as the ice trail and traditional activities, happening this weekend.