City Council to take over running of Galway’s Christmas Market

The Christmas lights being switched on at Eyre Square. (Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy).

Galway City Council is to take over the running of the annual Christmas Market in Eyre Square from a private operator from next year – and it plans a major overhaul for the event.

This week, the Council set aside an allocation of €150,000 in the city’s 2018 budget to allow for the takeover of the event and to change the format of the current operation, giving local crafts people better opportunities.

At Monday’s meeting of the City Council, Cllr Declan McDonnell proposed a large number of amendments – to the tune of €680,000 – to the €78m draft budget, largely to directly benefit specific community projects and works.

At the top of the long list was the €150,000 allocation, specifically sought to fund “a start-up of Christmas market operation, under a committee controlled by Galway City Council.”

Afterwards, Cllr McDonnell said that it was envisaged that the 2018 market would mirror operations already proving successful in other parts of the country.

“Waterford City and County Councils fund and organise the Christmas market there, with a committee of interested people and councillors,” he told the Galway City Tribune.

“The Councils there give €175,000. It’s also happening in Cork, and there is a very good one on City Council land in Belfast – the organiser of that will be one of people we will talk to.”

He said that it was not yet known if that figure would be sufficient, but that it would go some way to cover the start-up costs.
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