Ballyclare Eco Market supports worthy causes
Over £900 was raised to support the work of the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice and Women’s Aid at an Eco Christmas Market in Ballyclare at the weekend.
The event, which was the first of its kind to be staged in the Antrim and Newtownabbey borough, was held at Ballyclare Town Hall on Saturday, November 6.
The unique event was packed full of ideas to help make Christmas extra special and a little kinder to the environment too.
Lots of quality pre-loved Christmas decorations and toys were available to purchase, plus the essential Christmas jumpers and many more items too good to lose to landfill.
The market featured a re-gifting stall brimming with the bits and pieces thoughtfully bought as the perfect gifts, but were never used and ended up in the back of cupboards.
Talented local crafters also displayed original and creative gifts made from sustainable materials.
Speaking on behalf of the event’s organisers, The County Antrim Countryside Custodians, Katherine McAdam said: “We had hoped that the first ever Eco Market in the borough would be a success but on the day we were completely overwhelmed by the support we received from the local community.
“The pre-loved stalls, local crafters and the charities represented all reported a record number of sales and the public seemed to really appreciate the benefits of regifting, not only in terms of helping the environment but also by picking up some great bargains.
“Many people also asked if we would consider holding an event like this again, which was very encouraging. We’d like to thank all the volunteers who planned and helped deliver this unique Christmas event including the Ballyclare Victoria Flute Band for creating a wonderful sense of seasonal cheer; Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council for their support and encouragement; and of course everyone who joined us on the day.
“Together with their help we raised over £900 to support the great work of Women’s Aid and the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice which were Mayor, Cll Billy Webb’s, chosen charities this year.”
Independent Ballyclare Councillor Michael Stewart added: “It was truly remarkable to see what can be achieved by a dedicated group of volunteers, working together with the business community, local charities and the council. The outstanding success of the Eco Market clearly demonstrates a genuine public interest in environmental issues and shows how making small changes in lifestyle choices can make a big difference in our community and our environment.”
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We’re more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers. Please consider purchasing a copy of the paper. You can also support trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription of the News Letter.