A Cranford Christmas | Knutsford Times

A Cranford Christmas

By on October 20, 2010

Knutsford, inspiration for Elizabeth Gaskell, one of the nineteenth century’s most popular writers, is about to experience its own version of a Victorian Christmas Market.

Planned for 2 December, the day of the Christmas Lights Switch-on, the market will run from 1pm till 9pm, with the switch-on of the Christmas Lights and the Father Christmas parade commencing at 6.30pm.  The market will be situated in two key locations:

The Children’s and Gifts Market will be found in front of Allen & Appleyard, on Princess Street, and the Food & Drink Market will be run along the length of Regent Street, and will include many Cheshire food producers and growers, to celebrate Cheshire’s wonderful local produce and foodie businesses.

The market was the idea of Sarah Flannery and Kate Houghton, who while campaigning for Sarah, who stood as the Independent candidate in for May’s General Election, talked to many local business owners and felt that such an event would be a boost for Knutsford’s retailers and restaurants and to residents’ and business owners’ pride in this unique Cheshire town.

“Christmas Markets are an increasingly popular way for small towns in Cheshire to attract visitors to their centres.  Local businesses benefit greatly with the added volume of people coming into town, all with Christmas shopping in mind!” says Sarah.

“Kate and I took the idea to Knutsford Town Council’s Christmas Committee who immediately gave their support.  They do a marvellous job of the Christmas Lights and Father Christmas’s parade along King Street and by working together to combine a market with this annual event it looks set to be a great family day.

“Not only do we hope that local businesses will benefit greatly, especially if they can offer late night shopping, but by including voluntary organisations and the Children’s Adventure Farm Trust charity, we hope the whole town will be able to come together in a day of goodwill and show our pride in this wonderful town.”

Local retailers and restaurants, including Booths and The Rose and Crown, have already offered to participate by running special events themselves on the day.

The Christmas Market will be officially opened at 2pm by Jennifer James, actress and CAFT patron.

The Christmas Market and Lights Switch on is set to be a musical extravaganza this year, featuring performances from the school choirs from Bexton Primary School, St. Vincent’s Primary School and Manor Park Primary School, the Knutsford Operatic Society will be performing in period costume and the stars of Hallé Productions Dick Whittington, The X-Factor’s Rowetta and Andy Scott-Lea will be showing off their musical talents too!

“The inaugural Knutsford Christmas Market is already looking like it’s going to be a lot of fun and attract a lot of shoppers to the town” says Sarah. “I for one can’t wait to be there!”

About Kate Houghton

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