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Town getting ready to welcome market
5:50am Monday 30th September 2013 in Echo News
A NEW market in Southend’s High Street is set to open in less than a fortnight.
It is hoped the market, which will be held every Thursday from October 10, will boost trade in the town and enjoy the kind of success enjoyed by Rayleigh’s Wednesday market.
Trevor Day, a market stallholder, has played a big part in bringing the market to the High Street.
Mr Day said: “The stall traders are really excited about going into the High Street. It’s where a market should be.
“It’s going to be like lifting the market from Rayleigh and putting it down right in the middle of the street. It will be brilliant.”
Southend Council will have control over the market, a system which Mr Day said stall holders preferred to having a pitch at a privately-run site.
The market will run from the High Street railway bridge up to WH Smith’s, and will initially have 20 stalls, with the potential to double its capacity at a later date.
John Lamb, the council’s deputy leader, said the market would be an asset to the town.
He added: “Everyone is very pleased to see it moving along.
We hope it will be successful and add an extra dimension to our shoppers’ experience.
“It will increase the footfall and we hope it has a knock-on effect and boost the trade of others in the town.”
One of the biggest success stories of Rayleigh market is how pleased shopkeepers in the town have been with the increased number of people on Wednesdays – at times making it a busier trading day than Saturday.
Shopkeeper Alan Dadswell, director of Toys’n’Tuck, in Queens Road, said: “I think it helps to have a market in a town.
“We’ve always found that whenever they’ve done specialist markets here, like the German ones, it brings people in. Anything that brings more people into the town I’m all for.”
Shopper Ray Davis, 70, of Inverness Avenue, Westcliff, thinks the market will help to showcase what the town has to offer.
He said: “It’s a marvellous idea. I know my wife is looking forward to it.
“I don’t know if I’d come in to town just for the market, but it will be a good chance to showcase the town to others.”
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