The organisers of an annual Christmas Market in Galway say they are greatly disappointed by a decision to prevent the event from taking place this year.

The market has been running from early November to mid December for a number of years, attracting significant visitor numbers to the city.

But Galway City Council says that in light of the ongoing pandemic, it has decided to cancel activities and events in Eyre Square for the coming months. 

The local authority says no such events will take place in the municipal space "for the foreseeable future" but that it hopes the Christmas Market could return in 2021. 

The company that organises the event, Milestone Inventive, is critical of the decision, which it said came despite considerable work having been undertaken to run a re-imagined event, which would have taken account of public health advice.

It argues a final decision should have been delayed, until closer to the time when the current Level 3 restrictions are scheduled to end.

The company says the cancellation of the market will result in a €20 million loss to the local economy this Christmas.

While the market will not take place, the city council says it is working to instead deliver "a safe, socially-distant Christmas experience in Galway this year".