Businesses in Worcester are set for one of the busiest ever Christmas periods as the city continues to buck national trends.
According to the latest figures issued by the Worcester BID (Business Improvement District), the city is set for one of its busiest Christmases ever when it comes to people visiting. Cumulatively footfall in Worcester has risen by 4.4 per cent over the course of the year, and data for October suggests that footfall in Worcester’s city centre is 7.7 per cent higher than for the same month last year. This is very different from the national picture, where footfall has seen a four per cent overall drop for October compared to 12 months ago.
“It’s fantastic that footfall in Worcester is significantly higher than last year – it’s excellent news for local businesses and for local employment,” said David Blake, MD at Worcester City Council. It shows that Worcester’s economy is not only very robust but is bucking the national trend. The major investment which the city council and partners have made in Cathedral Square has played a significant part in this success.”
The Christmas lights switch-on taking place this Thursday, November 23 will help to attract even more people to the city centre. The fun starts in Worcester High Street at 4pm, with the lights switched on in front of the Guildhall at 6pm as part of an action-packed family evening.
“I’m very much looking forward to welcoming people to Worcester’s city centre for this very special occasion,” said the Mayor, Cllr Steve Mackay.
“It’s always a really fun event – the festive spirit is contagious and people of all ages really enjoy the occasion.”
The Christmas lights will be switched on by the Mayor and special guest Pudsey Bear. Worcester Carnival queen and princess will also be present – and a snow machine will be in operation in front of the Guildhall. The event signals the start of Christmas late night shopping in Worcester city centre, with many shops staying open until 8pm on Thursdays.
It’s also less than 10 days to go to until this year’s fabulous Victorian Christmas Fayre, with nearly 200 stalls filling the streets of Worcester from Thursday 30 November until Sunday 3 December. Now in its 25th year, the Victorian Christmas Fayre is one of the most prestigious street fayres of it’s kind in the Midlands – contributing an estimated £7million to the local economy each year. A record number of leading producers from the region will be making a special effort to tickle the taste buds of the thousands of visitors expected to throng to the city, with some brand new tastes and flavours.
“Worcester’s Victorian Fayre is one of the highlights of the Midlands’ festive calendar, and with all sorts of culinary delights available, you definitely won’t be leaving hungry!” says Worcester City Council’s events organiser, Helen Mole.
“Coming to the Fayre is a great way to support local businesses, as a huge number will be selling food, drink and unique handmade gifts this year.”
A full list of all the stallholders and their locations as well as other useful information is available at worcesterchristmasfayre.co.uk