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Business plan aims to make town's market 'exciting'

Monday, 19th September 2011.

A bid to maintain the vitality of Haverhill market has been revealed by the council.

A new business plan for both the Haverhill and Bury St Edmunds markets aims to create 'exciting atmospheres which attract new customers and professional environments where stallholders can trade successfully'.

Cllr Sara Mildmay-White, St Edmundsbury Borough Council cabinet member for economic development, said: “Both markets have a huge role to play in the success of their town centres so it is vital that we make sure they can thrive in such a competitive economic climate.

"We want our markets to continue to be vibrant, exciting and positively buzzing with the type of excellent value, high quality goods that customers demand these days. We will be working with our market traders to create an environment for success.”

St Edmundsbury operates the Friday/Saturday Haverhill and Wednesday/Saturday Bury St Edmunds markets.

The council’s business plan follows recommendations in a report from the National Association of British Market Authorities (NABMA) and consultations with traders.

It looks at ways to attract new traders, by targeting stallholders at markets trading on different days and offering incentives, as well as new customers.

Ideas include a social hub in the Bury market, with high quality food and cookery demonstrations using local produce, plus crowd-pulling events and entertainments for both markets.

Other proposed actions include encouraging traders to have a greater emphasis on, and promote, more local produce and goods.

Another suggestion is to introduce a ‘Shoppers’ Charter’, which is a familiar feature of many other markets across the country. The aim is to ensure a high quality shopping experience, including visits from ‘mystery shoppers’ and customer surveys.

Traders are getting the proposals (available on www.stedmundsbury.gov.uk/markets) this week before discussion at a meeting with market representatives later in the month.

Haverhill Online News

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