Sunday, 23 November 2014

Council's Cabinet to discuss Charter Market layout, consider 'radical' options next month

The results of a recent consultation into the future of Lancaster’s Charter Market will be presented to the city council’s Cabinet on Tuesday 2nd December.

Cabinet members will be asked to consider the results and the options for the layout of the market following the completion of the city centre improvement works.

Two potential layouts will be presented for consideration.

The first option is based on the current footprint of the market and would see existing permanent traders continuing to trade from Market Street, Market Square and Cheapside.

New traders would be allocated pitches on Church Street and New Street, with existing traders being given the option to relocate for a rent free period.

The second option would alter the existing footprint of the market so there would only be pitches on one side of Cheapside, meaning some existing permanent traders would relocate to Church Street.

In both options traders would be asked for their views on where they are located.

In addition to being asked for their preferred layout, Cabinet members will be asked if a more fundamental overhaul of the Charter Market is needed, raising again the ideas that both traders and angry locals have resisted and protested at.

Mark Davies, Chief Officer (Environment) said: “The city council wants to see a thriving Charter Market because of the contribution it makes to Lancaster and the local economy.

“The recent consultation provoked much healthy debate between market traders, shop based businesses, shoppers, the Chamber and Business Improvement District.

“What was absolutely clear is that there is a wide spectrum of views and respondents were polarised in how they think the market should be delivered.

“Cabinet will therefore be asked, in addition to their preferred new layout, whether a more radical overhaul is required so many of the questions raised during the consultation can be addressed.”

1 comment:

Michael Gibson said...

Hmmm..."angry locals".

I would argue it is a vociferous minority wound up by market traders. The petition said, 'they want to close the market' where there was no such plan.

Locals want a thriving Lancaster city centre with a diverse offer. A well managed and regulated market on Church Street, Cheapside, New Street that seeks to be diverse in its offer and not just clone what's on offer elsewhere, and is also well promoted, would broaden the city's footfall and help regenerate its quieter streets.

As usual though with Lancaster views are entrenched and too few can see the bigger picture. However in York, Wells, Oldham, Kingston etc. etc. better councils have moved and refocused markets with the outcome of more people visiting, more market income, happier traders, happier shops and a hugely improved town centre.