Businesses in Skipton are hoping to entice festive shoppers to the town this year with lights, painted shop windows, mulled wine stalls and a scavenger hunt.
Skipton BID - which represents local businesses - says it wants shoppers to enjoy a 'Covid-safe festive season' and has put together a Christmas campaign inspired by the new series of All Creatures Great and Small.
The run up to Christmas would normally see up to 30,000 visitors to the town daily, but this year's Christmas Markets and Christmas Lights Switch On events have been cancelled to avoid large crowds. Instead, businesses say they want to keep Skipton attractive to visitors in smaller numbers and create a welcoming environment for residents to enjoy their town.
Here's what's going on as part of the All Things Bright and Beautiful campaign:
- festive street lighting around Skipton
- vacant shop windows have been painted by the artist Jenny Tribillon
- late night shopping in December with more than 30 shops open until 8pm
- a Robin Scavenger Hunt around shop and restaurant windows through December with weekly prizes
- two mulled wine pop-up stands, at High Corn Mill and near Jerry Croft
- recognition for the best-dressed shop window, which will be awarded at next year's Skipton Business Awards.
Liz Smailes, Marketing & Communications Officer with Skipton BID says: “We’re delighted at the level of engagement and enthusiasm the businesses have shown, which brings this campaign to life during a very challenging time, when we really don’t know the extent of restrictions we will be working with in December. Hopefully the restaurants, cafes and bars will be allowed to open so that our late night shoppers can enjoy the town’s hospitality as well.
“The campaign title was inspired by the popularity of the recent TV series remake All Creatures Great & Small and the additional tourism it brought to our town. Putting a festive spin on this also gives us the opportunity to link our campaign in with the current VisitBritain national campaign – Escape the Everyday at Home – which is promoting the domestic staycation throughout the low season months”.
Geraldine Thompson, Manager and Director of Skipton BID added: “Since the relaxing of restrictions out of the first lockdown, everyone in the town’s authorities has worked collaboratively to create a safe and secure environment for our businesses, visitors and residents. As such Skipton managed to stay in Tier 1 while many areas around us entered Tiers 2 and 3.
“In designing our Christmas campaign, it was important for us to support our retail businesses in what is historically one of the busiest times of the year, while at the same time maintaining a safe environment for everyone as we adapt our ways to live with Covid-19 at this point in time.”