Fowey traders pleased with town's festival developments
A DECISION by Fowey Festival organisers to focus it more on the town centre in future has been welcomed by local traders.
In the past businesspeople have claimed that with the festival village built away from the town centre, shops and eateries do not benefit from the influx of visitors and the festival does nothing to support the town's economy.
The move into town follows a disappointing year for the festival, which for 2013 dropped the du Maurier name it had borne since it began in 1997 and became the Fowey Festival of Words and Music.
Organisers say the downturn in the economy and poor weather affected ticket sales for many of the events, which were held in tents.
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They announced last week that the festival would be returning in 2014 but would be more centred on the town.
Karen Turpin, owner of Fowey Fish and Wines, said taking advantage of what was on offer in the town was the right move.
"I'm very pleased that the festival will continue and that the organisers wish to bring more events into the town," she said.
"We have great facilities within the town that are currently under-utilised."
Oli Davies, owner of the Webb Street Company, said Fowey had some great venues the festival could use, but he also hoped the organisers took a look at the acts and tried to broaden its appeal.
"I'm pleased that they're trying something new," he said. "My only advice is to diversify the types of acts they have on and make it more family-friendly."
Fowey Chamber of Commerce chairman Steve Beresford said he hoped the new developments would see the festival and the town finally come together.
"I and the chamber welcome the news; it's what we've been trying to get across since the chamber and Fowey Town Council steered the festival in its first non-Cornwall Council year," he said.
"It's definitely the way to go and should allow the town to call the festival its own."