The retail market industry’s two leading organisations have welcomed the news that outdoor markets can fully reopen from 1st June, and indoor markets from 15th June in England.
The National Market Traders Federation (NMTF) and the National Association of British Market Authorities (NABMA) say they hope that support to help markets to return may also be possible through the £50 million Reopening High Streets Safely Fund announced over the weekend.
NMTF Chief Executive Joe Harrison said: “The announcement that markets can open up again will be a massive boost to many market traders and small businesses. This is a lifeline and we urge them to support and cooperate with market operators as they face the difficult challenge of complying with government guidance”.
Market operators have also experienced a difficult three months, with no government financial support, and now have the responsibility and cost of ensuring that their markets can comply with social distancing in both outdoor and indoor settings. A recent NABMA survey has suggested that 40 per cent of markets may never open up again.
NABMA Chief Executive David Preston said: “We are pleased at the fact that markets were specifically mentioned by the Prime Minister. This demonstrates the recognition of the value and importance of markets to the high street and local communities. The new High Street Fund is a welcome incentive to help and encourage markets to start back. We are urging our members to apply to the fund to help meet some of the costs involved. It will be important for operators, traders and customers to now work together to welcome back markets across the UK.”