How a mum-of-two is hosting Blackpool's biggest Christmas Market at the Winter Gardens

Santa at last year's Christmas market organised by Dawn Baxter
Santa at last year's Christmas market organised by Dawn Baxter

A working mum is pulling together what is hoped to be Blackpool’s biggest Christmas market next month.

Dawn Baxter, who runs Pretty Home Prints, as well as working as a social media digital business coach, is organising the giant event at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens on Sunday, December 1.
The mother-of one has managed to get 150 small businesses to register to set up niche stalls from noon until 5pm.

Theresa Mayman from Theresas Handmade Treasures at last year's Christmas market in Blackpool, organised by Dawn Baxter

Theresa Mayman from Theresas Handmade Treasures at last year's Christmas market in Blackpool, organised by Dawn Baxter

The fair offers a festive day where visitors can enjoy live music, festive food and drink and a chance to see Santa.
A percentage of money raised from the event will go to N-Vision, a Blackpool-based charity which supports people who are blind or visually impaired.

Dawn, 34, said: “After years of travelling to Manchester for Christmas shopping, I thought it was time Blackpool had its own festive fun.
“The markets generate a massive amount of tourism and Blackpool is a beautiful seaside town, but at Christmas, the town can struggle.
”We have seen a couple of Christmas markets in the town but they are more like car boot sales, so we wanted to do our own.

“We did our first one last year at The Imperial Hotel, in Blackpool, and we had an immense response, with nearly 6,000 people.
“This year’s market is even bigger and better than last year.
“We have local performers coming, Children from Devonshire Primary Academy will sing and the adult choir from Michael Hall Theatre School will be there, singing Christmas carols.
“Children can also enjoy a free visit to see Santa.

“We have tried to make it unique, with lots of niche stalls, offering visitors the best customer experience of the day. We want the businesses to sell out of their products as they are the only ones selling them, so we can support the local economy.
“A lot of these niche businesses were set up by mums like me who wanted to follow their passion and monetise it. I set up my e-commerce business Pretty Home Prints, making digital and drawn home decor prints, when I went on maternity leave as a way of finding additional income.

Dawn Baxter and her family

Dawn Baxter and her family

“I have been able to organise this with the love and support from my husband, Iain.
“We organise and host this event ourselves as a family. But we work all year so that the community can have this time together. It is self-funded and we get no support from anywhere else.
“We know it will be a very special day for everyone involved. So we invite everyone to come along and support it.”

Last year's Christmas market organised by Dawn Baxter

Last year's Christmas market organised by Dawn Baxter