The market, which is managed by Exeter City Council, was suspended for a two month period from early November to allow for the centre’s roof to be replaced and solar panels to be installed. With the Stagecoach bus depot relocating to part of the site, staff at the market have been working hard on new arrangements for a smaller but better organised event.
Market traders have been asked over the last few months to register their interest in attending the new market and all of those who have fully registered will be invited to the new market. Those who have not completed the registration fully will be placed on a waiting list and contacted when space becomes available. There will still be plenty of space available for car boot sellers who turn up on the day, although entry for car booters will in future be restricted to those who arrive in cars which can trade from a standard pitch. No commercial vehicles will be allowed access to the market unless they are registered traders who have been issued with a permit to trade.
Cllr Rosie Denham, the City Council’s Lead Councillor for Economy and Culture, said: “We are really pleased to confirm that the market and car boot sale will return in January, and that we have been able to accommodate all the traders who have registered with us. We are very hopeful that the market will continue to thrive despite the more limited space."
David Lewis, the City Council’s Events, Facilities and Markets Manager has appealed to market traders to make sure that they follow the new guidelines for the market: “Only market traders with a permit to trade can be admitted to the market. Those traders who are issued with a permit must trade from the pitches they are allocated when they arrive each week but they will have guaranteed space at the market. The market gates will open at 6.15 and we are asking traders not to arrive too early because if there is congestion on the highway then the future of the market will be put at risk."
“We had no choice but to limit the area for market traders because we need to ensure enough parking is available on site for buyers visiting the market. The consultation we carried out at the market showed us that visitors really wanted the car boot element of the event to continue so we have ensured that there will be enough space for that although it will be restricted to genuine casual car boot sellers and not regular traders as has sometimes been the case previously.”
The market offers visitors a wide range of products and Councillor Denham says that while this has been one of the reasons for its success it has also presented its own problems: “I am aware of the difficulties that the staff and volunteers at the market have experienced in making sure that the event is safe and also that people are trading legally. We want to make sure that we are organising a successful event and the new measures being introduced will help to ensure this is the case.
“We will continue to provide an opportunity for charities and community groups to raise funds by assisting with the market and we will still be able to accommodate more than 200 car boot sellers each week. We recognise the community value of the event and we are pleased to be able to welcome people back from the first Sunday in the new year.”
Member since: 10th July 2012
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