AROUND 50 stalls are set the fill the town at next week’s Victorian Christmas Market which is hoped to make this year’s festive lights switch-on the best ever.
The market will be officially opened by Uttoxeter Town Mayor Martin Blencowe together with Santa and his reindeers immediately following the Christmas lights switch-on on Friday, November 30.
Townsfolk will be able to travel back more than 100 years to experience the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of a recreated Victorian town market.
Shopkeepers and stallholders will be in Victorian dress, as will the performing Salvation Army Band, the Uttoxeter Heart of Oak Morrismen will also perform and there will be a climbing wall and sleigh rides on offer for children.
Helen Davies (pictured), who runs Helen Louise in Carter Street and is chairman of the Uttoxeter Trade Forum, has organised the event.
She said the night will offer people a chance to start their Christmas shopping as the majority of shops will remain open until 8pm, along with lots of market stalls selling locally handmade crafts and produce.
She said: “We have got approximately 50 stalls we are having 30 in the road in Carter Street, Market Place and some in the High Street and about 20 underneath the Maltings as well.
“The town schools are getting involved from nurseries up to Thomas Alleyne’s High School, we’ve got choirs coming and Stagecoach theatre school in Uttoxeter. So many people have got in touch.
“I have told people to bring leaflets and promote their own businesses and organisations as that is what it is about.” The stalls will consist of ‘local’ products according to Mrs Davies, including a hog roast, mulled wine, basket maker, wood turner, glass artist, crystals, decopatch, silver jewellery, pottery, Mukasse foods and sweets.
Celebrations start in the town at 4.45pm and the Christmas lights will be switched on at 5pm before the market takes over.
Councillor Blencowe paid tribute at last week’s full council meeting to the work of Mrs Davies in organising the market.
He said: “I am looking forward to the light switchon and the Victorian market and many thanks to Helen Davies for her hard work in getting this market together.
“I believe there will be stalls more than filling the market place and spilling out into the surrounding streets so that is fantastic.
“I would encourage all of the councillors to be there and make it a really memorable event.”