Two illustrated baubles with an image of a fox on

Christmas Market Postponed

Knutsford Christmas Market, the annual festive community market in Knutsford, has been postponed to Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th December.

The market was due to be held on 27th and 28th November but had to be moved due to the second lockdown. The market will run from 11am to 4pm each day.

The market forms part of Knutsford Town Council’s wider Christmas celebrations which normally includes the Santa Parade and Christmas Light Switch On, but unfortunately due to Covid-19 these other features of the festive weekend were cancelled, with the Lantern Parade postponed to 2021.

The Christmas Market will be held this year on the Princess Street and Silk Mill Street car parks, with a few stalls on Princess Street to bring the two areas together. The market will be separated into two main sites featuring crafts, and food and drink stalls. A one-way system will be in place around the sites which organisers from the council ask that all visitors abide by to keep themselves and other visitors safe. Hand sanitiser stations will also be available at each market site entrance and exit, and directional signage will help to direct visitors around the sites to enjoy a safe shopping experience. Mask wearing is not compulsory, though visitors should wear a mask if they prefer.

The market has been scaled back to allow for social distancing and will feature around half its usual number of stalls, but organisers have ensured that favourites in pies, cakes, art, jewellery and more will still feature at the reduced market.

Visitors to the market can enjoy an easy commute by making use of the free Park and Ride shuttle service which is returning for a third year since it was introduced in 2018. The shuttle service offers passengers a free short shuttle bus ride from Booths Hall to Knutsford Bus Station to help reduce burden on town centre car parks, some of which are closed for the event. Booths Hall is situated just 1 mile outside of Knutsford and has around 1,000 parking spaces available to allow visitors to park for free and board the free shuttle bus for an easy ride into the town centre. In 2020 rules for public transport will apply and passengers will be requested to wear a face mask where an exemption does not prevent this. Donations will be collected by volunteers from the Cheshire Badger Vaccination Programme.

There will unfortunately be no live entertainment at the market this year, and no hot food and drink stalls; this is to discourage dwell within the market itself but visitors can enjoy a visit to Knutsford’s wide array of restaurants, cafes, pubs and bars as part of their visit to the festive market instead.

For any enquiries regarding the market, you can email christmas@knutsfordtowncouncil.gov.uk or call 01565 653 929.

Two men looking at a stage wearing t-shirts which say "crew" on the back

Knutsford Music Festival 2020 Cancelled

Knutsford Town Council has continually monitored the latest government advice concerning the spread of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and the evolving social distancing advice designed to limit the spread of the virus. Our priority is always public health and we strive to make responsible decisions when planning events to protect the public, our volunteers and our staff.

The Events and Town Centre Management Committee met on 26th May to review the latest guidance with respect holding the Knutsford Music Festival in September. With huge regret the decision was taken that it would not be sensible to attempt to hold the event and as such there will be no Knutsford Music Festival 2020. Knutsford Town Council prioritises the health and safety of our residents and we do not feel that continuing with a large-scale event at this time is the best way to do this.

We know that this will be disappointing for those who were planning to join us for a great line up of musicians, for the performers who were due to perform and for our local businesses who were organising events in their shops, bars and restaurants but we hope that all can understand this decision was made with the best of intentions to keep our residents and visitors safe. Planning for the 2021 festival will begin immediately with a view to announcing the dates of next year’s events as soon as possible.

We will be contacting everyone who purchased tickets for events to offer a refund and ask that all ticketholders bear with us as we process a large number of refunds.

The council will continue to closely monitor the guidance in relation to events as things develop over the coming months. Currently there have been no changes made to the Pumpkin Path event scheduled for 31st October or the Knutsford Christmas Markets scheduled for 28th & 29th November. The committee will review advice closer to these events and make decisions as to whether these events can be safely held in the coming months.

Knutsford Town Council would like to thank everyone for their patience as we work hard to minimise disruption during this tough time and we will continue to keep the public updated with our plans as we proceed.

If you would like more information, you can contact the council’s Events Officer at alex.brown@knutsfordtowncouncil.gov.uk.

Man Convicted after flouting Lantern Parade road closure

The Town Council is proud to host a number of community events every year and we naturally take the safety of visitors very seriously. Some of these events involve the temporary closure of roads to allow parades to pass through and we do our best to ensure that these closures are publicised in advance through signage and our social media and we seek to minimise disruption to residents and local businesses.

At the 2018 Lantern Parade a car ignored the road closure signage, verbally abused a member of Town Council staff and breached the road closure order to drive up King Street, in the process striking said member of staff on the hip, but fortunately not encountering the parade as he drove off.

This incident was immediately reported to Cheshire Police and on Wednesday 25th September Mr Paul Lockton appeared at Chester Crown Court charged with dangerous driving. Mr Lockton was found guilty and sentenced to two months imprisonment suspended for 12 months, 150 hours of community service and a 12-month driving disqualification.

In sentencing, Mr Recorder Atkinson said: “You drove your Audi R8 dangerously on a dark and rainy winters night in Knutsford Town Centre. The road was closed appropriately, and signs had been placed on King Street. It was explained to you by the marshall, Mr Garner, that a children’s lantern parade was due to emerge onto the road at any moment.

You responded with abusive language to the marshall who was there to enforce the road closure and protect the children and adults in the parade. You drove at speed in the very direction the parade was due to emerge from and in doing so struck with Mr Garner with your car. You were highly culpable and placed others at risk. Thankfully the injury to Mr Garner was minor but your actions were shocking to those that witness them.”

Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Green said “Mr Lockton’s actions endangered the public at our event. When roads are closed, they are closed for a reason and drivers should not attempt to just proceed past barriers. We like this to serve as an example of the potential implications for those who consider that the rules do not apply to them.”