Flintshire Council have defended their decision not to host Christmas Markets this winter in spite of large opposition.

The decision, made earlier in the year faced backlash from communities across the county, with the people of Holywell starting a petition to overrule the council's decision.

The council put the decision down to Covid and the uncertainty surrounding future restrictions.

During a Flintshire Council Governance and Audit Committee meeting, Niall Waller, enterprise and regeneration manager at Flintshire Council felt it was the right call to make.

"There has been a lot a lot of comments about the fact the council isn't organising directly Christmas markets this year as we did in 2019," he said.

"We didn't hold them in 2020 because of Covid and we took the decision not to run them this year on the basis that we couldn't predict what Covid was going to do. We didn't want to spend significant council money on an event that could be cancelled.

"As it now happens, Covid rates are by no means in a good place, so I think the council took a good call there.

"I wouldn't think we would want to be holding large events in the town centres. That said, there are commercial events taking place in some of the towns and it is there responsibility to manage those accordingly.

"In 2022 we can have a full programme of events and hold the markets and have a really positive year."

Mr Waller also discussed the current state of the markets in the towns and stated that the potential of Flint and Buckley having markets will be reviewed but admitted it is far from an easy process.

"Markets have obviously had a dreadful year and a half, two years," he said.

"They've faced extensive periods of closure and that would've massively impacted on the personal income of those traders, albeit they would have had some Welsh Government grants.

"So the net result is we've not lost that many traders because of the pandemic.

"We're still by no means out of the woods in terms of the markets, it is still a very challenging period for them and any further restrictions would be very harmful for them.

"We will continue to support Mold and Holywell as we do and they still run every week."