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Douglas set to deliver the ultimate Christmas package

Sunday, 17 November 2013 15:26

For all things Christmas it’s got to be Douglas. That’s the message from town centre manager Michelle O’Malley who’s coordinating the ultimate Christmas package of unique gift shopping opportunities, street entertainment and show-stopping specialist attractions.

 

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First up will be the Continental food and crafts fair taking place in the town centre from November 21st to 28th organised by Peterborough-based the Market Square Group and supported by Douglas Development Partnership. ‘We invited local traders and suppliers specialising in seasonal fare and homemade arts and crafts items to join this week-long event, the first of a number planned in the run-up to Christmas,’ said Ms O’Malley.

 

And, as one Christmas fair finishes, another begins.

 

MichelleOMalley DSC1148 MediumTown centre manager Michelle O'MalleyKeeping it local and keeping it Christmassy in Castle Street will be a local craft fair on Thursdays and Saturdays from November 30th through to December 21st. (5 to 9pm Thursdays, 10am to 5.30pm Saturdays). ‘These fairs will be another a great opportunity for Manx specialist suppliers and crafters to showcase their wealth of creative talent and imagination,’ said Ms O’Malley, adding, ‘Anyone wishing to apply for a stall needs to give me a call as soon as possible.’

 

And Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a tree which this year will be in Regent Street, the town centre’s planned new performance space where, throughout Saturday December 21st, a magnificent ice sculpture sponsored by Sure can be seen being created by artists  Stephanie Quayle and Darren Jackson.

 

And while the tills will be alive with the sound of Christmas shopping the town centre will be echoing to other sounds - from brass bands to buskers, school choirs to charity groups - all adding to the festive atmosphere.

 

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Meanwhile shops in the town will be dressed up to the festive nines, hoping to triumph in the Best Dressed Business competition. The local independents’ category is being sponsored by Gallery magazine and Manx Radio, the chain stores’ by Douglas Development Partnership in the form of a donation to the winning multiple’s nominated charity.

 

‘Trading conditions are really tough right now but thanks to the fantastic support of Gallery magazine and Manx Radio this is a competition that provides a tremendous advertising opportunity for local independent shops. Gallery magazine is donating a full page advertising space to the winner and Manx Radio a year’s free advertising.

 

‘For the chain stores we see this competition as an opportunity for employees to get together and decide on a charity they’d like to see benefit, while charities may wish to consider approaching the multiples and promoting their particular cause or campaign.

 

‘We’re hoping retailers will really support the competition by making their window displays eye-catching, which not only will help attract more visitors to the town but will also bring a little added Christmas sparkle to Douglas.’

 

Windows must be dressed to thrill by Thursday November 28th. The winning businesses will be chosen by public vote on Facebook. Just visit Douglas Town Centre Management’s Facebook page, check out photos of entrants’ displays and cast your vote. Voting closes at 5pm on Friday December 20th and the winners will be revealed the following day.

 

Need to know:

 

  • To book a stall for the November 30 to December 21 Castle Street local craft fair or to apply for a street entertainer’s pitch contact Michelle O’Malley. (See panel opposite).

 

  • Free parking on Loch Promenade walkway from 9.30am to 9pm every day from Thursday November 21st to January 5th 2014 (parking not permitted in this area between the hours of 9.00pm and 9.30am). Also free parking in Douglas Borough Council’s Shaw’s Brow and Bottleneck car parks from 5 to 10pm on pre-Christmas Thursdays from November 21st and all day Saturday and Sunday until December 24th.

 

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