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Is it the end for Featherstones market?

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Author Topic: Is it the end for Featherstones market?  (Read 1364 times)
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« on: June 13, 2011, 08:26:45 pm »

A report on options for the future delivery of Wakefield district markets is on the agenda for the Council's Cabinet on June 14.

The markets review is part of the Council’s overall review of its services agreed at its budget meeting in March. The Council is faced with saving £67m over the next four years due to Government funding cuts.

The report identifies four “non-core” markets at Hemsworth, Featherstone, Normanton and South Elmsall, and seeks approval to start negotiations with other interested parties on how these markets might be delivered in the future.

It further proposes negotiations around the potential sale, or partial sale, of sites used for Hemsworth and South Elmsall markets. If this happens, these markets could operate from different locations.

Cllr David Dagger, Cabinet member responsible for markets, said: “We know how valuable markets are to local communities but it is a sad fact that trade has dropped off at some markets since the recession and we need to ensure we are providing value for money.

“The Council is faced with taking some very tough decisions due to the financial situation we find ourselves in. We are looking at whether non-core markets could be delivered more sustainably in the future. That may include asking other organisations to come forward and run non-core markets so they can continue serving their communities. The report to Cabinet marks the start of that process.”

Graham Wilson, Chief Executive of the National Association of British Market Authorities (NABMA), said the action being taken by Wakefield Council was entirely consistent with the approach being recommended nationally by NABMA and being followed by other local authorities around the country.

“We want local authorities to look at a whole range of management models for markets to make sure they are delivered in a way that is fit for purpose. Wakefield’s action in talking to other organisations and looking at different ways of providing markets is completely in line with our recommendations and we welcome the steps being taken,” said Mr Wilson.

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