High winds led to Farnham Town Council having to take the disappointing decision to cancel Sunday’s Christmas Market on safety grounds.

In spite of the heavy rain, stallholders and Farnham Town Council staff and councillors rallied to get the market set up and open for the 10am start. However, the unpredictability of the gusting wind, led to the market being closed down shortly after midday.

Councillor Jill Hargreaves, Lead Member for Tourism and Events said: “In the weeks leading up to the market, many stallholders had worked into the early hours of the morning to make sure they had enough stock for the day. It is so disheartening to have been defeated by the English weather for what is for some the best market of the year. I feel very sorry for the stallholders and disappointed for the shoppers who made the effort to come along to the market for some last minute, special Christmas gifts and treats.”

Commenting on the decision to close the market, Iain Lynch, Town Clerk said: “Throughout the week, we closely monitored the changing weather forecast. We communicated with stallholders on several occasions and drew attention to the need to adequately protect stalls and products in case of gusty winds.

“On the day of the market, the weather took a turn for the worse and it became clear that stallholders were being affected by some very strong gusts of wind, so we took the decision to close the market. It is quite right that safety was our number one priority. Unfortunately, the logistics of organising such a large event meant that it is not possible to arrange an alternative event this year. Farnham Town Council would like to thank the residents and businesses for being patient and for offering their support and understanding during difficult circumstances, and a particular thanks to those who helped stallholders on the day.”

Many of the stallholders do sell their produce online. A full list of the stallholders and links to their websites can be found on Farnham Town Council’s website. Farnham Town Council organises a full programme of events during the year to showcase the excellent businesses in the town, and it is hoped residents will shop locally this Christmas and into 2018.

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