Petworth's Christmas markets to be licensed for alcohol
Petworth's Christmas markets are set to be bigger than ever this year, with a licensing agreement being drafted for alcohol sales, entertainment and street performances.
Town council chairman Chris Kemp said the application was largely due to the fact the town had been growing and licences were limiting the markets and other events held in the Market Square and surrounding streets.
Sussex Police had objected to the licence, which covers a large number of streets, but a committee meeting on the issue was cancelled last week after all parties came to an agreement.
Mr Kemp said: “It’s really good. I’m very pleased it passed by a bit of negotiation.
“It’s good for the Christmas events, it’s good for the farmers’ market, it’s good for the town.”
He said a larger licence was now needed for town centre events, such as over the Christmas period, to allow for Petworth’s growing population and health and safety regulations.
It will also give greater options for the types of stall holders who can attend or feature at market events.
“Even people like Langham’s as a brewery can’t have a stall at the farmers’ market without this licence,” Mr Kemp said.
“It just gives us that flexibility and it’s also from a licensing point of view, we have to step up to the next level of safety with a managagement plan.
“We’d already got a plan but this is the last bit of that.”
Streets covered by the licensing agreement will include Market Square, Lombard Street, Rosemary Gardens, Golden Square passage and Golden Square, Damer’s Bridge, the High Street and New Street.
According to the committee report, the licence application includes outdoor film screenings, the performance of plays, live and recorded music or similar entertainment and dance performances up until 11pm and late night refreshment.
Alcohol sales would also be permitted to 10.30pm.