A FRENCH market will not be held in Ringwood next week after all, after councillors scotched the idea, despite the promise of getting a little over £1,000 towards its Christmas lights.

Members of Ringwood Town Council’s recreation, leisure and open spaces committee said having a French market come to the town for three days at the same time as a farmer’s market and a summer fair was too much, and might serve to thin down attendees at each event.

The debate came after the operators of the French market approached the council after it had dates cancelled at another venue.

They wanted to operate a market from July 25-27.

The market has been in Ringwood before, years ago, and has offered £1,200 for the three days.

After licences and road closures have been paid for, the council would make £1,097, which town clerk Steve Nash recommended putting towards Christmas lights.

But members, though generally supportive of the French market, said there should not be two markets in the town on the same day.

The Stable Family Home Trust Summer Fayre is also being held on the Saturday and Cllr Christine Ford said two markets on this day might dilute attendance.

Cllr Angela Wiseman said in her opinion two markets would attract more people in to the town, who could attend both the markets and the event.

Edward Morant, who holds the Market Charter for the town, is said to be happy to support occasional markets that didn’t interfere with the weekly market, but that he wouldn’t support regular markets.

Cllr Michael Thierry said he was not opposed to the French market, but felt the council should have been consulted prior to the booking being made through the clerk.

Members voted to not allow the French market to be held.