On Saturday 6th December, the Nottingham Christmas markets were closed just 24 hours after opening.
Images were seen on social media of crowds cramming into the city centre without maintaining social distancing. There was clearly a desire to get out shopping before Christmas and perhaps to support the local traders. I imagine they must’ve spent the last few weeks worrying about how much business they will get during a post-lockdown Christmas season.
The fact that the city council decided to close the markets just a day after opening shows how poorly it was planned.
Everyone has failed to do their bit in this example and unfortunately, local retailers will be suffering because of it. The authorities clearly had not accounted for the fact that multitudes of people would want to go Christmas shopping at the markets, despite being in Tier 3 of the UK national restrictions (are city centres not ‘normally’ very busy around this time of year?).
There was clearly no ticketed system, no security or police measures to ensure social distancing and behaviour – it was a free-for-all. The shoppers as a collective were also not respecting restrictions that have been in place since early spring.
This is about planning and collective responsibility.
Until we take responsibility for our own actions, there will be more examples of things like this happening, when sadly, people will lose some of the livelihoods because of other people’s behaviour.
How can you be more responsible next week? How will you plan your week?