Shrewsbury Christmas Festival cancelled after one day

Image source, Ryan Edwards
Image caption,
Organisers of the event had previously described it as a "secret festive Christmas Wonderland of twinkling lights, immersive décor and marvellous wintery surprises"

A Christmas festival has been cancelled just one day after it opened its doors.

Shrewsbury Christmas Festival, billed as a "Christmas Wonderland with marvellous wintery surprises" opened on Saturday and was due to run until just before midnight on Sunday.

However, organisers said in a statement "circumstances beyond [their] control" had led to them cancelling the event.

It could take up to 10 days for people to be refunded but food stalls were operating on the riverside, they added.

In a further statement they said the event was expected to run at a loss and it had done, but that had raised doubts in some people's minds about whether the event would go ahead.

'Absolutely diabolical'

Announcing the cancellation of the festival, a statement on the event's Facebook page said: "Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond our control this event has been cancelled.

"All ticket holders for Sunday have been issued a full refund, which will return to the purchasing account within 7-10 working days.

"Apologies again for any inconvenience caused."

People who had visited the festival in Raven Meadows on Saturday took to social media to express their disappointment, complaining of a lack of food, no atmosphere and a lack of both decorations and attractions.

Becky Jones said the event was "absolutely diabolical".

'Winter nightmare'

"The organisers should donate any profits to charity. Let's face it, it won't have cost much to put on. At least some good could come out of this shambles", she added.

Ryan Edwards was at the event on Saturday and said he and his wife found it to be "the worst Christmas event we had ever been to".

"In reality it was more like a winter nightmare than a winter Wonderland.

"The food stalls were almost non-existent, the decor was missing, there was no atmosphere and no-one inside as people were leaving very quickly", he said.

Beth Heath, director of the unrelated Shropshire Festivals company which previously ran a winter festival in the town for three years, said she had been inundated with complaints about the event but said it was nothing to do with her company.

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