The council’s replacement for Brighton’s Christmas Market won’t go ahead this year.
Brighton and Hove City Council said it couldn’t find a commercial partner to commit to a single year – and couldn’t afford the £70,000 needed to stage an event on its own.
In July, previous organiser E3 Events said it was “relaunching” its Christmas Festival – but not putting on the market or funfair it had brought to Valley Gardens 2021 and 2022.
The council said it wanted to stage its own event with “brass bands, choirs, gifts, crafts and fun for all the family”.
But today, lead councillor for tourism and culture Alan Robins said this wouldn’t be possibe this year.
He said: “Organising a Christmas Market for the city was always dependent on finding a new commercial partner to help us to fund and co-ordinate the event.
“Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we have been unable to find a partner willing to commit to the project for a single year.
“Given the enormous funding crisis the council is facing, we cannot commit to spending the £70,000 needed to stage an event.
“We wanted to create a different kind of Christmas Market this year – because in the two years it was staged it was never actually all that popular with the public, and was also expensive for traders who wanted a pitch there.
“We received a fantastic response from community groups, artists and makers in the city keen to be involved In a Christmas event – and we appreciate they will be disappointed.
“However, we will keep in touch and look forward to involving them in future Christmas events in the city.
“We recently announced a wonderful scheme we’re planning to have a community Christmas tree put up in each of the 23 council wards across the city in time for Christmas.
“We will be announcing further information about this lovely community initiative as soon as we can.”