A favour to ask those who like going to vegan festivals

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A favour to ask those who like going to vegan festivals

Postby Hiking Fox » Thu Nov 18, 2010 11:09 am

As most Brits will know, there is a now a thriving and growing calendar of vegan festivals and food fairs. One of the medium-sized ones is the East Midlands Vegan Festival, which until last year took place in The Council House (town hall) in Nottingham's Market Square; right in the middle of the shopping centre. It is an excellent venue, with a tram stop right next to it and loads of space.

The event has always been free and has been really inclusive and multicultural since day one, with loads of people giving feedback that they turned vegan after going.

Unfortunately, this year's event isn't going ahead because the Council won't let the organisers use the town hall. Their explanation is that there would be "too much wear and tear" on the building. We speculate that this isn't the real reason, because a different Christmas fair is going ahead on the weekend before that will have nearly twice as many stalls and is being widely advertised.

Lots of vegans and potential stallholders have contacted the organisers in dismay, to ask why there won't be an event this year. The problem is that there is no other venue in the city centre big enough. The only other big venues are too off the beaten track to attract passing non-vegans in. We used a different venue a few streets from the city centre one year and attendance dropped from 3,000 to 300, with most of those coming vegans already, so it was crap for outreach.

If you like these events, please (politely) email Nottingham City Council
to ask them to let the town hall be used next year. You could make the following points:

* People travel into Nottingham to attend the event from areas like Leics, Derbyshire and even further afield. While in Nottingham they spend money and support local businesses.

* The event generates goodwill for the Council, who have expressed a strong desire in the past to support community initiatives and healthy eating.

* The local press like the event and always promote it.

* The event is family-friendly and free. There is lots of educational material and food samples.

* Stallholders come from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds. Most are small, local businesses (like organic veg growers, chutney makers and hand-made soap makers) who rely on the event to attract customers and network with others. Small businesses need help to compete with big chains and events like this provide it.

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Re: A favour to ask those who like going to vegan festivals

Postby alit » Sat Nov 20, 2010 7:18 pm

I will send an email - in the past I have travelled from the Midlands - well in fact from my village which is on the Worcs borders. Whilst there I used the tram and went into town to look round the German market so was a visitor/tourist. I thought it was a great venue.

I love to support the stalls and the rescues who book stalls and stocked up on my Christmas shopping.

Hope it does get the go ahead next year :D
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