BATH CONSERVATIVES STATEMENT ON LATEST
CHRISTMAS MARKET ANNOUNCEMENT FROM BANES COUNCIL
“It is now more clear than ever that this Administration simply does not have the skills nor experience to be running BANES. The Christmas Market is now a commercial enterprise that is dependent on careful planning and commercial commercnous. It was extraordinary to see the Council budgeting to make a significant loss on an event normally attracting 400,000 extra visitors who spend over £32 million.
“The decision to cancel the Christmas Market, which only a few weeks ago it was announced a fewwas going ahead, is an abrogation of responsibility, shows ignorance of sound business practice and is frankly a has causedtotal embarrassment to the City.”
- On June 24th the LibDems running BANES Council said the Bath Christmas Market could go ahead.
- On June 30th Leader LibDem Councillor Kevin Guy said:
“I have asked that we extend the Bath Christmas Market so that it runs for an additional week.
“The market provides a huge boost not just to the stall holders but also to our retail, accommodation, hospitality and tourism sectors and this year it will play a critical role in helping business get back on its feet.
"This year is an opportunity for us to trial an extension and run it closer to Christmas. We want to make sure our stallholders are supported as much as possible and while the event is not being marketed internationally, because of Covid, an exciting and enhanced online market will complement the physical event.”
- On Friday September 17th, the day AFTER the last Full Council of the 2021, and after a Cabinet meeting in public at which the decision was not mentioned, the Council announced the Christmas Market would not be going ahead, instead some form of drastically “scaled-back” activity would take place.
- The reason cited: an inability to recruit enough COVID Marshalls, plus somewhat ludicrously BREXT and logistics issues:
- there are currently no obligations for COVID Marshalls in England.
- many other cities are still holding Christmas Markets, including Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, and Worcester.
Bath Conservatives are appalled by this fiasco, which will have cost local businesses a great deal of trade, trouble and money, and will confuse and upset potential visitors.
Bath residents have mixed views of the Christmas market, living with the disruption it causes while recognising the money it brings into the City, not least for local traders and the local hospitality sector which residents enjoy the rest of the year.
It is now clearer than ever that this Administration simply does not have the skills nor experience to be running Bath. The Christmas Market is a commercial enterprise that is dependent on careful planning and commercialcommercial nous,. y Yet this Council budgeted to make a loss on an event normally attracting 400,000 extra visitors, who spending £32million while here. Reversing its earlier decision is an abrogation of responsibility and shows ignorance of basic business practice;. iIt’s resulted in a total embarrassment for the City.
This fiasco over the Christmas Market joins those such as:
- the Cleveland Bridge closure;,
- the on/off North Road bus gates and cycle lane;,
- the cancelled-at-last minute University of Bath Graduation ceremony;,
- the closure of the globally-important Fashion Museum;,
- the bungled replacement of a 5G mast, prompting derision in the national media
- the under-price sale of public properties and land;,
- the muddle over the future of the High Common;,
- the U-turn on charging residents for recycling DIY waste
And more. It all paints a compelling picture of incompetence, ineptitude and the collapse of effective political leadership within the Council.
Bath Conservatives are working with Conservative councillors in BANES Council to challenge this administration in the Council Chamber. We are already reaching out across the city, working with people of all backgrounds to ensure residents are offered an effective alternative to this failing administration when the time comes to elect a new Council for Bath and NE Somerset in 2023.
We invite anyone concerned about what is happening to our City to get in touch with us. Let’s work constructively together to save Bath and start planning now to put it back on the right track.