A victory for common sense is only fayre

Muir Street Primary School
Muir Street Primary School

A councillor has hailed a victory for common sense after a Motherwell primary school was given permission to hold a Christmas fayre.

The PTFA of Muir Street Primary were planning their first ever seasonal event when they were told by North Lanarkshire Council they would need to spend £300 on a market licence.

Unwilling to just hand over a large chunk of the money they were hoping to raise, members of the PTFA began to carry out investigations and found that other local authorities waive their fees while providing a licence for similar charitable events to be held.

The parents took their case all the way to the Scottish Government seeking an exemption to needing a licence, and eventually the council backed down and the Christmas fayre will now go ahead on Saturday, November 29.

Motherwell West councillor Paul Kelly was approached by parents about the matter at one of his surgeries.

He said: “I’m not on the licensing committee so I’m not entirely sure how the process works, but an organisation being asked to pay for a licence to hold something like a Christmas fayre was certainly a new one on me.

“There may be some sort of legal requirement, but I am happy that common sense has prevailed and the PTFA at Muir Street will be able to hold the event and keep all the money they raise without having to worry about using some of it to pay for a licence.

“I have to pay tribute to the members of the PTFA who worked very hard investigating this matter and ultimately their diligence was rewarded.”

A spokesman for North Lanarkshire Council added: “Following a discussion with a representative from the school’s PTFA, who provided us with additional information about the event, we were able to allow the Christmas fayre to take place without the need for a licence.

“We hope the event will be a success.”

The Christmas Fayre runs from 10am-noon with over 35 Christmas stalls including Christmas gifts, perfume, jewellery, handbags and sweets.

A kids only room will be on offer as well as the opportunity to write a letter to Santa and youngsters can also visit the man himself in his grotto.

All are welcome and entry costs £1 which includes tea/coffee and a mince pie.