City Council invests £150,000 in giving Worcester a Christmas to remember
Worcester City Council has invested around £150,000 to give the city a Christmas to remember this year – despite the new restrictions introduced in response to the Omicron variant.
The funding is behind the decorations that are bringing joy and colour to the city centre and many of the major festive events across the yuletide season, including the lights switch-on, the Victorian Fayre, and the Christmas Gift Market that continues to 22 December.
The festive programme has helped attract residents and visitors to shop safely with the city's unique mix of independent retailers and national brands, and the many visiting traders who have been part of the city's festive markets.
The City Council's work has brought a big boost to many local businesses.
Mark Rasdall, of Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shop in High Street, said: "As a small independent business we have been hugely indebted to Worcester City Council for their support over the Christmas period. The Victorian Fayre, in particular, brought huge numbers of visitors - new and familiar - to our sweet shop."
Yue Yue, Manager of the Ping An Oriental in Pump Street, said: "The City Council has helped provide a really positive environment for my business. The Victorian Christmas Fayre was a huge success for Ping An and a testament to the organisation, marketing, and general hard work from all those involved within the Council."
The Leader of the City Council, Cllr Marc Bayliss, said: "We have pulled out all the stops this year to cover Worcester in festive glory, to bring seasonal cheer to our residents and visitors, and to support our city's many high quality traders in what continues to be a very difficult time.
"Despite the impact of the Omicron variant and the rollout of Plan B we know people still want to celebrate Christmas as best they can, so I hope the investment we have made helps people to enjoy this most wonderful time of year."
Worcester's packed festive programme has included the switching-on of the Christmas lights in Cathedral Square on 27 November, an event enjoyed by thousands of people, and the return of the Victorian Fayre, visited by more than 100,000 people across its four-day run from 2 to 5 December.
For the first time, the city is also enjoying a Christmas Gift Market, with unique goodies available in chalets in High Street every day until 22 December. This is being boosted each weekend by entertainers across the city centre bringing a festive smile to shoppers and visitors.
Thanks to a special yuletide offer, shoppers can also park for free in all 14 of the City Council's car parks after 3pm Monday-Saturday until 24 December, and all day on Sundays.
The City Council has also funded Christmas trees, festive lights and other seasonal decorations across the city, including the extra tree that has now been installed and decorated on the St John's roundabout. There is also a specially decorated tree outside WH Smiths on the High Street which has a fabulous multicoloured display every hour, designed to attract and delight.