Evening News readers respond to a city centre business chief’s accusation that critics of Edinburgh’s controversial Christmas Market are “jumping on a bandwagon”

Essential Edinburgh chief executive Roddy Smith’s robust defence of the Capital’s winter festivals sparked a massive response from readers. Here are a selection of your thoughts.

Tuesday, 19th November 2019, 5:00 pm
The Christmas market pulls in the crowds

The citizens totally understand the benefits of these things and put up with inconveniences but they feel they see nothing real from the results of the extra revenue the council makes from them. Budget cuts everywhere, roads a mess, parking charges up, bins overflowing, every bit of land that can be sold punted for student accommodation while homelessness increases. That’s down to the poor way the council is run. They bring the criticisms on themselves.

Jenny Mitchell

There’s a balance needed. It appears that there is no consideration at all to local residents. Only “it brings money in”, which is clearly great, but the question “how does this impact residents?” needs to be asked. The way they treated the Remembrance Garden is shocking.

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Santa gets the festive season off to a 'flying start' at Light Night

Steve Jones

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City centre chief accuses Edinburgh's Christmas market critics of 'jumping on a ...

Nine out of ten folk who think this is great are either hotel owners or folk coming into city for it. Spread it out – there’s no need for it to be crammed into city centre! People still live here. Edinburgh has a great bus service and easy access to other parts of the city.

Julie Logan

Utterly disingenuous. The narrative that the council and their masters in the commercial sector are trying to create is that heritage preservation and tasteful marketing are somehow the opposite thing to positive tourism and optimal revenue. Almost every other equivalent capital city in Europe manages to do it (a quick hop over to Copenhagen might be an idea).

Martin Henry

How utterly blinkered, Mr Smith. Another profit-driven community-crushing activist. Are you sure you’re not a local councillor?

Davie Black

With so many people in a ‘small city’ it will only be a matter time before it all falls apart. I’m not talking about the buildings but the tourists, who will not come back because of the overcrowding. That’s the reason I don’t go to London any more.

Paul Sayers

Tell these folk to get the bus down to Pilton see how this money helps Edinburgh in general

Dylan Godsell

If you stuff tourism the council tax rises even highe. Get real – it’s the tourist pound that keeps Edinburgh afloat,

David Whitson

Mr Smith has entirely missed the point! Princes Street Gardens are a green public space for all the citizens and visitors to enjoy, that stops being that, as soon as it turned into a tawdry Tatfest shopping and retail area.

Raymond Rose

I take it he doesn’t have to travel through the city to get to work,

Naomi Mackay

What this mans says is irrelevant, he doesn’t care about Edinburgh and he certainly does not care about its residents, he only cares about his paymasters: “Roddy Smith, chief executive of Essential Edinburgh – which represents 600 hotels, bars, restaurants and retailers.” People like him are responsible for the Disneyfication of the city.

John Cromb

I’m sick of hearing about all the problems the Christmas Market is apparently causing. So many Scrooges this year! Let people enjoy some Christmas festivities!

Claire Hogg

Light and shade

In related events news, traders in the Royal Mile have branded Light Night, the official launch of this year’s Christmas festivities “shambolic”.

It’s Christmas! You don’t hear them complaining during Festival time when it’s busy and they hike their prices up!

Karen Walker Witherspoon

It’s not Christmas, it’s November.

Sam Steel

The kids loved it and there were plenty of happy faces so I’m not sure what the issue is? Are the over-priced cafes/bars/shops raging that the locals were all enjoying this event and not being drawn in with the over-priced food and drink?

Ashley Dee

I worked at this event as a steward and it was a success! The public all seemed to enjoy themselves and kids were chuffed to have Santa fly over their heads!

Lee Macleod

It happens once a year! I bet they aint moaning when their tills are seeing pound signs. The reaction to Edinburgh’s Christmas this year has been disgusting. I wonder how many of you would moan if they did nothing.

Alex Fraser

The street was covered in litter afterwards as well. Shows you the type of people that are attracted by a tacky light show. Edinburgh can do better.

Mark Clement