We want to see a vibrant and economically successful city and recognise that events like the Christmas market have a contribution to make.
The proposed extension is being promoted, as we understand it because research has suggested that such an extension will generate significant additional trade. It has also been suggested that an extended timescale will allow organisers to smooth out demand better and avoid peaks in congestion.
Ignoring for a moment the inherent tension in these two justifications we hope that should this extension go ahead there will be published research showing whether the extension has in fact delivered either of these results.
There is very little in the way of direct benefits to city centre resident's from the market and we feel that BTP does not do enough to acknowledge or compensate for the disruption caused. Specifically, The event stewards could and should do more to help city centre residents experiencing difficulty or disruption.
The Christmas market is organised for and in many ways by the business community. However, our members are continually reporting businesses who complain to them about the damage they claim the market does to their trading. This seems to us an issue that BTP and the business community need to address with some urgency before implementing any extension.