Toggle menu

Council encourages people to support local this Christmas

Chichester District Council is reminding residents of the exciting local events, markets, and gift buying opportunities on their doorstep this Christmas, with the launch of its Countdown to Christmas 2023 campaign.

Shop local for christmas graphic

"It's really important to highlight the value in shopping locally at Christmas because our businesses have so much to offer," says Councillor Harsha Desai, the Chichester District Council's Cabinet Member for Growth and Place.  "From using local markets and food producers or making the most of festive visitor attractions, to searching for unique gifts from independent shops, it's important that residents continue to 'shop local, visit local, and support local' this Christmas.

"Our high streets in Chichester, East Wittering, Midhurst, Petworth and Selsey, have plenty of shopping opportunities on offer. And while you're there, you can also enjoy the wide selection of cafes and restaurants to make your visit even more special.

"I'm also pleased to say that we will also be running some special parking offers to support businesses and encourage people to shop locally in the district into this festive season."

The council will be offering the following:

  • select two hours and get a third free in all council-owned car parks across the district (except Avenue De Chartres and Westgate car parks) during weekends in December when using the MiPermit app.
  • free parking in the Avenue de Chartres car park in Chichester on Sundays during December.

The council is also looking forward to welcoming the Chichester Christmas Cheer market to the city centre in December. This special market will run on 9, 10, 16 and 17 December, bringing an array of festive stands to North and East Street in the city centre. Find out more on our .

The regular Chichester Farmers' Markets in East Street, the city centre Wednesday markets, and the Saturday traders markets held in the Cattle Market car park, will continue to take place in the run up to Christmas. The Farmers' Markets will be taking place on 1 and 15 December. These markets provide an extra festive opportunity for residents to shop locally this Christmas and support businesses in the district. For more information about these markets, including dates and locations, please visit our farmers market page and our general markets page.

In the lead up to the festive period, Chichester District Council's final Cross Market & More event of the year will be taking place on 19 November in Chichester city centre. This innovative, quality artisan mixed street market showcases the talent and creativity from across the district in North and East Street from 10-4pm. For more details about this event, along with lots of other local markets and events, follow the Chichester District Events and Markets Facebook page (opens new window).

There will also be the chance to turn the Priory Park Guildhall in Chichester into a winter wonderland, with two Get Creative! days in the Guildhall in December organised by Culture Spark. Running on 9 and 16 December from 10am until 4pm, the two days consist of art and craft workshops where people can make origami butterflies, icicles out of recycled milk bottles, and design their own picture frames cards or baubles.

Professional artists, including Mark and Rebecca Haden Ford, will also be attending the days, helping to transform the Guildhall into a magical wintery scene with pieces that can be decorated with items people make in the workshops.

Alongside fantastic shopping opportunities, the district is also home to a huge variety of wonderful attractions and arts, culture, and heritage organisations. To help plan days out during what is a busy time for many, and to enjoy more of what the district has to offer, residents can visit The Great Sussex Way's website (opens new window) which has more details on the attractions and sites to take in over the Christmas period/

The city, towns and villages across the district are organising plenty of festive events too. To keep track of all that is happening over the Christmas season residents can view the council's 'What's On' calendar. The Chichester BID also has a calendar of events that are taking place in Chichester city centre, which can be found on the Chichester BID website (opens new window).

To help encourage people to support local businesses in the district the council has also created personalised gift tags and wrapping paper designs for the city and the towns of the district. These can be downloaded to print out at home by visiting our .