Put your feet up, pour yourself something festive, and enjoy your Christmas gift shopping safely from home while also supporting the borough’s small craft and gift artisans at this difficult time.
We had hoped this year to hold our first crafts Christmas Market at Cantley Park but this is obviously not feasible. So we have moved it online by creating a Wokingham Virtual Christmas Market Facebook page, with virtual stalls for small independent businesses, and a live shopping window for everyone to peruse at their leisure.
The virtual market is due to open on 13 November and run until 21 December.
Are you a local baker, jam maker, drinks shaker, artist, or jewellery maker? Perhaps you make Christmas cards, or bespoke toys or clothing? Do you make or produce the perfect Christmas gift? You can post your wares, as images or videos, on the virtual Christmas market’s Facebook page once a day.
Shoppers can then look through the posts and show their interest by either liking that post or by leaving a message. The vendor will contact the shopper direct allowing them to find out more about the item, and the sale is then done offline away from the page.
There are also plans to have ‘special nights’ on Friday evenings focusing on specific areas such as food and drink, art, or crafts.
If you’re a small crafts business keen to book an online stall apply by clicking on this link or visit the Facebook page (see above) for more information. There is a one-off admin fee for booking your virtual stall.
“Sadly, Christmas is going to be a little different this year but we can still try and capture some of its magical festive cheer – which we all desperately need at the moment – by finding innovative ways to prepare for and celebrate it,” said Cllr Parry Batth, executive member for environment and leisure.
“Virtual Christmas markets aren’t new and have been increasing in popularity in recent years for shoppers wanting to avoid the crowds or find something unique that they might not see in the bigger chain stores.
“But for this year it means you can shop safely in the comfort of your own home, at a time that suits you, while also giving our local businesses a much needed economic boost during the pandemic.”