Concern over the impact on businesses due to the loss of parking spaces in Market Square during Sprintfest 2023 has been voiced by Ramsey commissioner Rob Cowell.

The live music event will be held over a four nights during TT week, with the aim of keeping fans in the town following the races and the Ramsey Sprint.

But in order to stage the event, the square has to be cleared of cars, resulting in the loss of 50 parking spaces for four days, which Mr Cowell estimates could mean a loss of £30,000 in income to local traders.

He told the monthly board meeting that he had spoken to the owners of St Paul’s Square and they were willing, in principle, to allow parking there for the duration.

His other criticism was of the Sprint itself.

‘The Sprint is Ramsey’s most historic event, but it was diabolical last year. There’s no other word for it. It was really bad. There was no food offering, definitely not selling Ramsey at its best. I feel that, as a board, we are sleepwalking into exactly the same scenario. A poor Sprint means a poor Sprintfest.

‘We’ve voted that it should go ahead this year and that’s fine, but we need to take the Sprint itself as our starting point for next year. The one feeds the other.’

Deputy town clerk Steven Bevan earlier told the board that road closures along West Quay would be minimised to evenings only, directional signage would be improved and talks were taking place with licensees to see how they could capitalize on the event.