Town centre head plans to stay and sing for Spalding

Spalding town centre manager 'Dennis Hannant plans to see out his three-year contract in attempting to transform the town's economic prospects.  Photo by Tim Wilson.
Spalding town centre manager 'Dennis Hannant plans to see out his three-year contract in attempting to transform the town's economic prospects. Photo by Tim Wilson.
  • ‘Singing Major’ admits to frustrations in his role of promoting high street
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Spalding town centre manager Dennis Hannant has given a qualified response to rumours of him leaving the post after just a year in office.

Ahead of the annual Spalding Pumpkin Festival on Friday, Mr Hannant said he would honour his three-year contract and work to promote the town centre despite being “frustrated” with certain limits to his job.

Mr Hannant, known as the Singing Major because of his entertaining at weddings, clubs and community events, took up the post last November and has worked with a Town Centre Management Board overseen by Spalding and District Chamber of Commerce and South Holland District Council.

“At the moment, my intention is to see out my three-year contract because when you do a job like this, you build up a lot of good relationships with various people and you don’t want to let them down.

“But I do feel frustrated that a lot of what I was asked to do when I took on the job is against the law, including the idea of having markets in Market Place because it then reverts to being a highway.

“Also, a lot of what I want to put on can only be done on a Sunday when all of the independent shops aren’t open.

I have to question whether what I’m doing is having an effect in increasing the amount of people coming into the town centre

Spalding town centre manager Dennis Hannant

“So I have to question whether what I’m doing is having an effect in increasing the amount of people coming into the town centre.”

Mr Hannant was the mastermind behind August’s two-day Spalding and South Holland Food and drink Festival, an event revived after a three-year absence which brought nearly 2,000 people into the town centre.

“We had a really good turnout for the festival and I’m very happy with that,” Mr Hannant said.

“I’m currently working on next year’s food and drink festival to make it bigger and better.”

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