The Christmas lights on the Born last year.

03-12-2016Julián Aguirre

The Christmas lights will be switched on in Palma on 23 November, the day before Black Friday. The town hall's citizen participation department, responsible for festivities, has told retailers' associations that this will be the day. These associations, especially those representing smaller retailers, were unhappy that the lights didn't go on last year until 3 December.

Eva Frade, the councillor for citizen participation, says that a meeting has still to be held to firm up all aspects of the lights but that the town hall has opted for the Thursday. This is in order to avoid what the town hall believes would be overcrowding (of people and traffic) if the lights coincided with Black Friday. The same argument was used last year when Frade was justifying the delay.

Retailers would prefer the lights to go on on Black Friday, which is what they had wanted last year.

Away from the centre of the city, the town hall is more amenable to Black Friday being the day. Talks are being held with businesses in areas such as Pere Garau and Eixample.

The councillor for trade, Joana Maria Alcover, says that her department is on the side of retailers who want the lights for Black Friday. Two years ago this was the case. She adds that last year, according to the retailers' associations, there was a negative impact because of the delay.

It was also pretty evident last year that there were differences between Alcover (PSOE) and Frade and Rodrigo Romero of Podemos over the timing of the lights. Romero is the councillor for infrastructure, which means that it is his department which puts the lights up. As reported a couple of weeks ago, a start has already been made on installing Christmas lights.

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