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Wisbech repeats £5 a day offer to attract new market traders

Wisbech market in the same boat as other towns with trade not yet back to pre-lockdown levels.

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Desperate to attract market traders, Wisbech Town Council is to repeat its £5 a day offer for a one-month trial on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. The council – which in 2022 completed a £430,000 pedestrianisation of the market place – hopes the refreshed initiative will incentivise possible new businesses.

The council tried it out last year but without success.

Terry Jordan, the town clerk, told a meeting of the town centre committee last October, that the first trial had attracted only one inquiry.

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Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

And that, he said, “did not, however, result in the enquirer deciding to trade at Wisbech market.”

But with a new year and still keen to attract traders, the council has not given up on the idea.

“Wisbech Town Council run two main markets on Wisbech Market Place on Thursdays and Saturdays, although we do have other traders throughout the week and on Sunday, including car boots on Thursday and Sunday,” says a statement issued by the council today.

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

“If you would be interested in trading, we would like to hear from you. As an encouragement, we are offering a promotional special rate of £5.00 per day for Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays for one month (from commencement).

“This is for a non-electric pitch. You will be required to provide the council with proof of your public liability insurance and if relevant, your food hygiene certificate.”

The statement added: “This is a good way to test the waters and see whether trading on Wisbech Market Place would be advantageous to you.

“If it is, we would require you to come a licenced trader when the promotional period expires.

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“For enquiries, please email info@wisbechtowncouncil.gov.uk or call 01945 461333.”

Last October Mr Jordan told councillors that, following various operational changes that had been required during the last couple of years due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Wisbech Market had been operating “as normal” since 12 April 2021.

But in common with trading levels in most town centres, trading had not returned “pre-lockdown” levels.

The clerk explained that the level of trading had remained fairly constant over months prior to October but the council had “lost” a couple of traders recently.

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

He said that the general “feedback” from traders was that, although the footfall in the town is relatively high, most people appear to be visiting the town centre for leisure/recreational/social uses, not for retail purposes.

The clerk informed said council officers continued to explore ways of attracting not only market traders for all days of the week but to encourage car booters on Thursdays and Sundays.

He said this was important both in terms of generating income for the council and contributing towards the viability and vibrancy of the town centre.

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

Wisbech Town Council is repeating its £5 a day introductory fee to encourage new businesses to trade from Wisbech market. The offer applies only to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. PHOTO: Wisbech Tweet

Mr Jordan said council officers planned visits other markets which are operating relatively locally, to “spread the word” regarding opportunities to trade at Wisbech Market.

 

 

 

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