Santa is set to give flood-hit Mytholmroyd businesses a boost this Christmas.
St Nick is set to attend the village’s first Christmas market at St Michael’s Church car park on Saturday, December 15, from 2pm to 6.30pm.
Organised by Royd Regeneration, the event is aimed at encouraging residents to buy their Christmas gifts from local traders and thereby giving the flood-hit economy a much-needed boost.
Eric Alston, chairman of Royd Regeneration, said: “It should be a really enjoyable day for the whole community.
“The idea is to get the whole community involved and buying their Christmas presents, if they can, from some of the people participating.”
Hosting a stall at the event will be Milly’s Cafe, Waites, JMD’s Hardware, P.J & J Brookes Newsagents, First Choice Greengrocers, Elanaze, The Electric Shop/Computer Solutions and Fairtrade.
There will also be arts and crafts in St Michael’s church hall, provided by Val Jordan, Donald Crossley, Michelle Campbell, Lesley Alston and Conclairs Woodturning.
Music for the event will be provided by Herr Jens’s Oompah band, from 2pm to 4pm and carol singers, accompanied by a brass quintet, from 4.30pm to 5pm. There will also be storytelling by Margi McAllister and a visit by Santa. As an extra festive treat, there will be free hot chestnuts, potatoes and mulled wine.
Eric said he expected the event to attract between 500 and 1,000 people .
“Our message is ‘come and enjoy yourselves’.
“We want the people of Mytholmroyd and surrounding areas to come and have an afternoon out.
“We want people to let their hair down, bring the kids, see Father Christmas, and have two or three hours of good fun.”
Hebden Royd Town Councillor Christine Bampton-Smith said: “I think it’s wonderful.
“It’s a great idea for the local traders to display their wares and for the people of Mytholmroyd and beyond to congratulate all of them for getting back on their feet after the floods.”
Funding for the project has come from a £5,000 grant Calderdale Council gave the village to promote itself after the floods.
Part of it is being used for the market and the rest will be spent on a guide book of Mytholmroyd and Cragg Vale.
Eric said: “The guide book won’t be in print until after Christmas, but the aim of it is to encourage more tourism and encourage more businesses to start up in the area.
“We’re really trying to show that Mytholmroyd and Cragg Vale are good places to visit, good places to live and good places to work.”