The family bonfire and fireworks event in Drumchapel Park which has been running for more than a decade saw bumper crowds last year after Glasgow’s main Bonfire Night event was cancelled.
But this year’s staging of the much-loved night – which last year included live music, funfair rides and food stalls – has been thrown into doubt after members of the Drumchapel/Anniesland Area Partnership Committee voted against the funding of the occasion.
Speaking to the Glasgow Times, Drumchapel Labour councillor Paul Carey explained the topic of Winterfest 2023 was put to a vote at the meeting on September 20.
He said the count was split at three each from the six members in attendance, with SNP councillor Anne McTaggart casting the deciding vote not to go ahead with it.
However, Carey argued that votes of this nature must be won or lost through a majority decision and insisted he is currently in contact with Glasgow City Council’s solicitor to get the motion for the event put to another decision.
He said: “You need a majority to vote something down. You also need a majority to put something through.
“Because they didn’t have a majority, the procedure wasn’t followed.”
Councillor Carey – who wasn’t at the meeting – admitted his despair at the prospect of not having a Winterfest and revealed his fears for the community on Guys Fawkes Night this year.
He added: “They don’t realise this is going to encourage illegal bonfires, it’s going to encourage people to buy more fireworks.
“The ones they are buying just now off the internet are six feet high, and they saw a scaffolding pole in half and put them in there.
“The other thing they don’t realise is they’ve taken thousands of pounds out of the businesses in Drumchapel because that’s their busiest night of the year.
“Every shop stays open late just to reap the benefits of the people coming in.
“There were over 10,000 people inside and outside the park, we had to shut the park and keep thousands outside because the park couldn’t cope with it, that was last year.
“If you look at even the taxi office is going to lose money, the chip shop, Greggs, Subway, everything stayed open.
“The local pub there, all going to lose thousands of pounds out of the community.”
A Glasgow City Council spokesperson said: “A bid for funding in support of Drumchapel Winterfest was put forward at the Drumchapel/Anniesland area partnership, but this bid did not receive sufficient support from the members of the partnership.
“As a result of this decision, options around delivery of the event are being explored.”
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