The Manchester Christmas Markets is among the biggest, most original, and arguably best Christmas markets in the UK.
Starting in 1999, the first Christmas market in the country has grown every year since, attracting more than nine million visitors to its 300 beautifully crafted stalls spread across ten individual sites – each with its distinctive character – and offering international food, drink and Yuletide gifts.
Unfortunately, last year’s markets were cancelled due to the pandemic that put all our plans on hold.
However, Manchester City Council’s Christmas spokesperson, Councillor Pat Karney, is ‘really – really – excited for its return’.
The markets will officially be open to the public from Friday 12 November to Wednesday 22 December 2021 with Covid safety measures in place.
He told Hits Radio Manchester: “It’s incredibly important that Manchester’s Christmas economy has this boost because tens of thousands of jobs are dependent on Manchester having a great Christmas.
“People will want to get together in a safe way. So we’ll make sure that it’s safe – and enjoy being human again and enjoying Christmas.
“It’s very important for all the young people in the city that they have a Christmas to remember.
“The pictures that we’ve had of Albert Square over the years where people have been standing on top of each other – that’s a million miles from what we’ll be doing this year.
“Each site will have very, very clear entry and exit arrangements so that we don’t take any public health issues with crowds.”
Councillor Karney continued: “The government keeps changing its mind on Covid passports and crowds, and we haven’t come to a separate decision on a big switch-on and a New Year celebration – but we’ll come back to that in a couple of weeks.”
What’s more, visitors will be glad to know that the ice rink will be back on Cathedral Gardens in late October, and a new Winter Wonderland is being created in Piccadilly Gardens too.
The markets are set to span nine different sites across the city, and the giant Father Christmas that we all love seeing on our Instagram stories will be back at St Peter’s Square.