More than £3K given for Rye Christmas festival

More than £3K given for Rye Christmas festival
More than £3K given for Rye Christmas festival

The will use the £3,340 to hire reindeer, an ice rink and a bucking bronco reindeer ride as well as funding old-fashioned street games, a procession and Christmas market.

Rye Town Council awarded the grant on behalf of Rother District Council (RDC) at the town council meeting on October 26.

Rye Chamber of Commerce’s Neil Cunliffe completed the application form in which he said the group aimed to change residents’ opinions of a Rye Christmas.

“By creating a more festive atmosphere with events and music for everyone throughout the day, we hope to change people’s attitudes to Christmas in Rye based on previous experiences and encourage this to be maintained for not just future Christmases but also other major festivals in the town,” he said.

“The Dickensian theme has been intentially selected to ensure we make the most of Rye’s beautiful character and the event fits in with the town.

“Our overview of the event ensures no matter what your age there is something that will appeal from adult art or pottery workshops, to the market for those seeking unusual gifts, the ice rink and street games, to Santa’s grotto and reindeer.

“We feel strongly that this will not only bring together the community but spark interests of those outside of the town.”

The group appealed for support in September as they needed £10,000 to realise their vision for Rye’s yuletide celebrations.

Some councillors supported the scheme as cllr Pat Hughes said reindeers would be a big draw and cllr Michael Boyd said the festival had got off to a great start, but was concerned that the request it not fulfill the ‘new event’ criteria.

Rother District cllr Lord Ampthill had similar concerns and said any event should not be solely focused on Rye but also the wider public.

The group has also received funding from Little Cheyne Wind Farm and RDC, and will be targeting sponsorship from businesses.

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