Traders concerned over market revamp delay

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MARKET traders are calling for action to ensure a planned £1.3 million revamp of Doncaster outdoor market moves forward.

Mayor Peter Davies had hoped the scheme would be approved by the full council last week - but instead it was deferred after Labour called for the plans to be re-written to include work on other markets in outlying parts of the borough.

The plans would see existing stalls replaced and refitted with better power and telecommunications links, and street furniture built.

It would also improve access to the Wool Market.

Nigel Wilkinson, chairman of the Doncaster Market Traders’ Federation, urged councillors not to play politics on the issue.

He said: “Anyone who is uncertain of what needs doing to improve the market just needs to come down here, look around, and see the rundown appearance of the place. It is in desperate need of refurbishment. The stalls have been repaired and repaired until they cannot be repaired any more.

“Doncaster Market is what set the place above other towns. We want something sorted out very quickly.”

The scheme had been agreed by Mayor Peter Davies’ cabinet but cannot go ahead until it receives full council approval, as it involves adjusting budgets.

Coun Glyn Jones, leader of the council’s Labour group, said the party supported investment in the market to ensure it remains one of the jewels in Doncaster’s crown - but wanted the report re-written to include investment both to Doncaster market and the markets in outlying towns, so the whole borough can benefit from a ‘boost in investment, jobs and growth’.

Mayor Mr Davies said his door was always open for any councillor who wanted to discuss the plans. He said his ideas already included spending money in Mexborough and Thorne markets with any cash that was left over after the work was completed in Doncaster.

He said: “The only way problems are solved is by discussion, not by shouting across the council chamber.”