The operators of the Belfast Christmas and Spring Continental Markets are delighted to be coming back to one of their favourite cities, offering their award-winning seasonal additions to the local and visitor experience in the city.
After a robust competitive process, and a nail-biting wait to hear the result, Market Place were thrilled to learn that they have been appointed to deliver the Christmas and Continental Markets for another three years, with a possible further two year option.
Market Place Managing Director Allan Hartwell said:
“We’re absolutely delighted to have another opportunity to continue our work in the city that we have grown to love, where it all started for us 11 years ago, when we worked with Belfast City Council to bring the first ever Christmas Market to City Hall. Even though we now have the operation down to a fine art, we never rest on our laurels. For us, this new appointment presents us with a chance to relook at the market offering, and how we can make sure we give the visitor an even better experience, listening to all the feedback we’ve been given. We’re considering a whole range of innovations for the Belfast Christmas Market for 2016, and are really excited to explore what can be done, all within the unique challenges of the city hall space of course and managing over a million visitors through the gates.”
Throughout the many years that Market Place has been working in Belfast, they have developed strong relationships with tourism organisations and everyone involved in the construction of and service suppliers to the operation of the 5week market all of whom are local businesses,. In addition 35% of traders at the Christmas are local, and the visiting market traders purchase a high percentage of their goods from local producers and suppliers. The gross economic impact for the City of Belfast from the Christmas Market measured £56m in 2014.
In this Year of Food and Drink 2016, Market Place plans to upweight the local trader offering even further with the addition of fifteen new chalets, as well as continuing to support new businesses through its Pitch Perfect sponsorship scheme.
“We deliver events which add huge value to the local retail experience in Belfast, encouraging shoppers to come to the city for the market in the first instance, but then further explore all retail opportunities across the city. It’s now well-recognised that the economic benefit which was most recently valued at £56million is spread across the city, and not just for the retail sector, but for hospitality and accommodation providers too. We’re already looking at how we can forge even stronger relationships with businesses and local organisatons, through partnership and sponsorship arrangements. This is a new chapter for us and we can’t wait to turn this next page.”
Market Place will be back in the city and across Northern Ireland from 19th to 30th May for a Spring Continental Market Tour that will see markets adding even more colour and flavor and to Derry-Londonderry, Newtownards and Belfast.
The Belfast Christmas Market will return to Belfast City Hall Gardens from the 19th November.
To keep up to date with what’s happening at the markets and for opportunities to take part follow the official Facebook pages at Belfast Continental Christmas Market and Market Place Europe or visit our website www.marketplaceeurope.co.uk