This year's edition of the Leuven Christmas Market will definitely take place this winter despite the coronavirus epidemic, the organiser announced on Tuesday.
While Christmas - and the markets - may seem like a long time off, the logistics of Christmas villages across the world will begin soon, with stallholders already looking toward to what will be possible and/or allowed during the 2020 season.
"We have received all the approvals to hold the Christmas market from 9 December to 20 December," organiser of the Leuven market, Dirk Pinte, said on VRT radio, adding that many measures will be taken to make sure everything happens safely but that the market will definitely take place.
"There will be one-way traffic for visitors, and the Christmas market will be divided into two parts: a catering area and a shopping area," Pinte said, adding that visitors will have to register.
All catering stalls will be brought together on Hoover square, which will become an open-air food market. That part of the market will also have its own tent, where a terrace can be made.
On the Ladeuze square, the other stalls where people can buy their Christmas items will stand.
A limited number of visitors will be admitted to the Christmas market, but the exact number of people allowed has not been decided yet. "In any case, however, there will be cameras with which we can see how many people are present."
Whether or not the Christmas market in the city of Brussels – called Winterpret in Dutch or Plaisirs d’hiver in French – will take place this year is not yet clear, only that the event has not been cancelled yet.
As the coronavirus situation and the corresponding measures are constantly changing, city of Brussels mayor Philippe Close recently said that he would "fight" to organise the market this year.
The German city of Cologne, however, already announced in August that it would cancel its celebrated Christmas market this year, blaming the coronavirus restrictions.
The Brussels Times