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Talks to give market a boost

PUBLISHED: 17:26 13 June 2008 | UPDATED: 20:37 05 July 2010

MORE stalls and new traders could be coming to a Lowestoft market as part of a new initiative to provide a "feel good factor".

A year after a bitter dispute between the Britten Centre Market traders group and Waveney District Council was finally resolved by the signing of new leases they have now joined forces to hold talks and unveil new ideas.

MORE stalls and new traders could be coming to a Lowestoft market as part of a new initiative to provide a “feel good factor”.

A year after a bitter dispute between the Britten Centre Market traders group and Waveney District Council was finally resolved by the signing of new leases they have now joined forces to hold talks and unveil new ideas.

And next week, new recommendations look set to be ratified by Steven Ardley, portfolio holder for health and wellbeing, at a council meeting at the Town Hall on Tuesday.

In a report to the council, concerns have been raised over the implementation of non domestic rates (NNDR) on permanent market stalls as this “has impacted financially on both the council and market traders.”

Aiming to reduce the cost to the council and contribute towards a more sustainable market, the report highlights how there are currently 13 vacant market stalls out of 36 within the Britten Centre, and there has also been a decline in the number of new traders applying for stalls.

So, in an effort to reverse the situation, the council is recommending that existing stall leaseholders be offered an additional stall for £21 per week on an initial three-month trial-basis.

The report states: “This initiative will have the following impacts: reduce the financial impact of NNDR on the council's budgets; provide an opportunity for the current market traders to develop their business by diversifying into other products; and having more stalls being utilised will create a feel good factor throughout the market and its customers, which might possibly attract new traders.”

With the traders group also taking an active role in moving them forward, new ideas such as better promotion, themed days, improved signage and working closer with the Town Centre Management Partnership are set to be discussed.

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