Joy as announcement made that Christmas festival will go ahead

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The Clitheroe Christmas Festival WILL take place, it was announced today.

However it will be renamed the Ribble Valley Christmas Fair and the venue will be Mrs Dowson’s in Clayton-le-Dale.

There will be a festive Santa tractor ride, nativity animals and the ice rink will be there along with around 50 exhibitors, a licensed bar and musical entertainment.

Julie Whalley, who is managing director of Lancashire Bites, which organised the event, said: “We did want to hold the event in Clitheroe but obviously I am glad it is going to happening but at a different venue.

“Amanda and Eric Dowson have been absolutely amazing and we extremely positive regarding the possible use of their land for the event.

“They could not understand why the decision was made not to have it in Clitheroe and when they said hold it it here I was happy to take them up on the offer.’’

The announcement was made after approval from the licensing department of Ribble Valley was granted yesterday afternoon (Wednesday).

A park and ride scheme will be operating to the new venue at Hawkshaw Farm in Longsight Road so that the people of Clitheroe can get there. But the new venue also offers easier access and car parking.

Julie added: “We also hope to attract people from Blackburn, Preston and the surrounding areas.’

An online petition was launched which attracted huge support after the plans to stage the festival in Clitheroe were cancelled. The Save Clitheroe Christmas Fair petition was set up after the decision by Ribble Valley Borough Council to refuse permission for the event.

Members of its community services committee voted against the proposal by Lancashire Bites to hold the festive event on Clitheroe Castle field citing reasons that the new event could have an impact on local trade and that the event coincided with already estalished festivals such as the annual Pickwick Festival in Whalley.

The Ribble Valley Christmas Fair will be held from Friday to Sunday, December 4th to 6th and for more details please go to