Forres area businesses get festive

A business which has had a presence in the town centre for almost a quarter of a century has been crowned winner of a Christmas decoration competition.

Home Comforts By Sandra took home the £100 cash prize for her ‘sparkly and crisp’ window display.

However, Sandra Davidson who owns the shop has pledged to donate the money to the Moray Food Bank and MFR Cash For Kids Mission Christmas campaign.

The contest was run by the Forres Area Business Association c.i.c. (FABA) which was set up in 2021 to encourage businesses in the Forres area to work together.

Babalu and Solo Hair Design won the £25 runner-up prizes.

Talking of her win, Sandra Davidson said: “I have never won anything before. I am delighted. I always decorate my windows, it’s a pleasure. It was great to see so many businesses getting involved this year, I think that the contest helped, although Forres always looks very festive.”
She added: “When I heard I had won I was so pleased but surprised as there are so many great displays throughout the town.”

Joanna Taylor, a director of FABA who had the pleasure of handing out the prizes said: “We are so pleased that we ran this competition. We just wanted to have a bit of fun and encourage businesses to get really festive this year. It was open to all businesses in the Forres area as we are set up to represent them all, so we didn’t want to limit the contest to the town centre. We were delighted to receive a number of entries from the outlying areas. We had entries from a home-based nail and beauty salon, Findhorn and Logie Steading. The directors did their best to see as many entries as possible either by the powers of social media or by visiting them.  The town always looks great but we just wated to add an extra incentive. It’s been a great way to engage with the businesses”

The Forres Area Business Association is now looking ahead to 2023 and has two events planned for the early part of the year, one on sustainability and another on connectivity. The Fiver Fest campaign where businesses are encouraged to offer a product or service for just £5 will also be back in February.

“There is lots going on,” said Joanna, “we are collaborating with Visit Moray Speyside and other local businesses to run a second sustainability event in January. We held a similar event in September looking at how business can become more sustainable and improve profitability at the same time as our members asked for information on this. It was so popular we are running it again. There will be more details released in due course.

“We will also be looking at growing our membership. We have a lot of engagement either face to face, via our emails or on the FABA social media sites, but we need to turn this into members. Membership is £40 a year and the money is to cover running costs such as insurance and accountancy fees, as well as hiring venues and, if required, paying for speakers for events. The Directors are all volunteers who give their time in support of the businesses of the area. Having more members would enable us to do more.”

You can find out more about the Forres Area Business Association and join at