Monday 5th July 2021 – CARLOS LÓPEZ with Mike Smith
The craft market organised by the Xàbia Port Business Association every summer on the promenade in the port will not be returning this summer due to the restrictions imposed to face the COVID-19 pandemic.
Several crafts people have spoken to XAD about their unhappiness at not being able to set up their stalls on the promenade this year and complained about the Council’s lack of drive and interest in not allowing them to move to another area of the port. They also pointed out that the stalls along the Arenal promenade have been allowed as always.
After the refusal of the Council to give permission to set up stalls in the port, the crafts people have sought an alternative solution by moving their craft market to the old BetiBo nightclub on the Les Planes road in Dénia, which will remain open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
XAD has asked for comment from both councilor Marta Bañuls (Economic Development) and the Xàbia Port Business Association.
The councillor explained that the organization of the craft market “is a matter for the business association” and that the Council then gives out the permits. She added that to put these stalls on the promenade in accordance with current COVID-19 regulations would mean that “you would have to fence off the space and place a person at the entrance [to the enclosure] with hand gel” and said that “there is no space to put them all in [the enclosure]“.
Asked if it was feasible to move the market to another area in the centre of the port, she explained that the business association had proposed to move in the square in the middle of Avenida Jaime I but said that “fences had to be installed and removed every day” and added that they – the Council – did not want the square closed all day.
Sources from the Xàbia Port Business Association explained to XAD that it has asked the Council three months ago if it would authorize the craft market as it was another element to animate the summer evenings in the port. But it did not receive permission since the promenade is a space that depends on authorization from Costas whilst it would also have been necessary to create an enclosure and control access into it.
The sources added that they were also told by the Council that if they set up the craft market on the promenade, the association could have received a fine from Costas. Thus, it was proposed to move in to the square in the middle of Avenida Jaime I but the option was rejected as were other proposals such as places the stalls in some of the streets that surround the church.
The association said that if the market had to be marked off in an enclosure then it cannot be done. And it is that in the Arenal promenade, the stalls are placed along the promenade without defined spaces, access control or routes, only with a separation distance between each of them.
The business association finished by explaining that the management and organization of the craft market will be passed on to the Council next year and – they hope – it will feature again in the port and become a dynamic element of summer evenings in the zone.