Doncaster council reassure concerned market traders

Shoppers at Doncaster Markets on Christmas Eve 2015. Traders say even though it looks busy, there are less people than there has been previously and business is the worst it has been for many years.
Shoppers at Doncaster Markets on Christmas Eve 2015. Traders say even though it looks busy, there are less people than there has been previously and business is the worst it has been for many years.
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Doncaster Council have assured market traders they will work hard to support them this year, following concerns about a decline in shopper numbers over the holiday season.

Peter Dale, Director of Regeneration and Environment said: “We continued to support and promote the award winning market in a number of ways over the Christmas period.

“We have dedicated members of staff who work with the stall holders and have used the land train to help transport people to the market place and promote the market as it makes its way around the town.

“The Mayor introduced a free parking initiative to encourage shoppers to the area and we have recently invested £1m in the market.

“We can’t always vouch for the great British weather and the heavens opening however we look forward to working closely with the vendors in 2016.”

Mr Dale’s comments come after market traders said they had one of the worst years of business last year - with one stall owner saying 2015 has been the worst in 37 years.

Andy Summers, owner of A.M. Summers Ltd Fruit and Veg, said: “I’ve been here for 37 years and this is the worst I’ve seen it.

“Meat and fish stalls feel the same, ask any of the traders – we all feel the same.

“It’s been bad all year, but this six months in particular things have taken a real nose dive. People just aren’t coming to the market like they used to. There was no rush at all over Christmas.

“People used to have to queue up to get a market stall, but it’s not like that now. All traders have to cut staff now.”

Helen Cairns, owner of L and H Cairns and Sons Fruit and Veg, said: “This is the worst I’ve seen it in the 15 years I’ve been here. Part of the problem is that all the supermarkets are at war, and we just can’t compete.

“It looks like there are quite a lot of shoppers here for the Christmas period, but they’re not here the rest of the year.”

Anthony Wright, manager director of Clive Smith meats stall, said: “I’m deflated. This used to be one of the best markets in the country, but it’s all going downhill now.

“The council aren’t doing anything to get people to come to this side of the town. Everything is around the Frenchgate now, it’s such a shame.”