Once again Christmas is fast approaching and I wonder what it will bring. For the first time in 20 years, our town is not having a Christmas parade with Santa in his grotto. Sadly, no-one was willing to organise this popular event with all the bureaucracy involved in getting the correct permissions and licences and getting everyone to work together. We will still have a giant Christmas tree at the harbour and many of our lamp standards will be lit with Christmas motifs but it will not be the same without the parade and grotto. The really sad part is that this event was organised by local shopkeepers to highlight what local shops had to offer. We all stayed open for the evening and this was a showcase to tell the public that they did not have to go to large town centres to shop. In other words, “shop locally, use us or lose us”. It’s true, we as a pet shop never made a lot on the night but people came back in the days and weeks following and bought things they saw on the night. Once these events have gone it is very difficult to bring them back. With our Christmas event gone as well as losing our lifeboat gala day in the summer we have a huge gap to fill in promoting our little town to the public.