Traders are hoping the Christmas Market’s final days – which coincides with the year’s busiest shopping weekend – will bring in business, after new Covid-19 announcements left certain days “deathly quiet”.

The annual market, located in Broad Street, reopened on December 9 and features 52 traders selling homemade gifts, unique products and artisan food and drink, as well as performances from local choirs and bands.

Last year’s market was cancelled due to Covid-19 and on opening day this year traders told the Oxford Mail how “excited” they were to be running stalls again.

READ MORE: ALL the traders at this year’s Oxford Christmas Market

However, the announcement of new Covid-19 restrictions during market’s run, including face masks in indoor spaces, Covid passports and working from home, has affected footfall.

Oxford Mail: Performers at the Oxford Christmas MarketPerformers at the Oxford Christmas Market

Harry Cunningham, 27, owner of wooden gift and homeware business Made in Oxford, described some days as “deathly quiet”.

He said: “Overall, it has been pretty busy because of a good mix of students, tourists and local people but there has been some really deathly quiet days.

“Wednesday and Thursday were not very busy and I cannot doubt the announcement had something to do with that.

“The working from home mandate means not a lot of people are leaving town at 5pm and so we have not had groups of colleagues come for a drink or to do some shopping.”

Mr Cunningham hopes the market’s final weekend will busy and help them move products they will not be selling in January when the business moves online.

He said: “We want our biggest weekend and lots of people!”

Oxford Mail: Oxford Christmas Market on December 18Oxford Christmas Market on December 18

Like Mr Cunningham, Tess Farnell, of homemade accessory business Anna Falcke, said while buisness has been “steady” certain days have been “slow”.

She noted that while people have come to the market to have something to eat, drink and take nice photographs, they have not been shopping as much.

READ MORE: Can you spot yourself at Oxford Christmas Market in these photos?

She said: “It has not been so much people shopping because of Covid-19. People may have felt safer shopping online than coming to a stall where people have touched things.”

The 26-year old added: “It is just not as we would want it to be.”

First time market trader and owner of Edie’s Bakery Sophie Wickert, 26, hopes the final weekend of trading will bring lots of shoppers.

She said: “It has been hard to tell but I thought it would get busier. I have found it has gotten quieter as last weekend was busy. Has it got quieter because of the announcements? Maybe.

“I hope this weekend will be busy and it already looks busier than it did yesterday and this time last week.”

Oxford Christmas Market is open until December 19.


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