Market shoppers told to ‘do their bit’ by Mansfield mayor

Official re-launch of Mansfield Market
Official re-launch of Mansfield Market

Mansfield’s mayor says the success of the revamped town market is now down to shoppers, who need to ‘do their bit’.

Kate Allsop was reflecting on her year since she was elected to Mansfield District Council’s top job, and paid particular attention to the market and controversial moves made in recent months.

This included moving all stalls from Westgate onto Market Place and spending more than £100,000 in an effort to improve the market.

Addressing councillors at the authority’s recent annual general meeting, Mrs Allsop said: “What we have done with the market is invest massively and we have a huge advertising campaign which will help bring people from far and wide into the market.

“So now it’s time for our residents and visitors to do their bit, which is come to the market with their purses full of money and leave with very little money but a lot of goods.”

The sweeping change to the market included closing all of the stalls on a Monday.

Cash was also spent on newly-refurbished, adapted or purchased stalls, new canopies, signage and welcoming decorations - as well as new umbrella-style stalls for entertainment and events.

Since the re-launch in April, a series of events have also been included to encourage shoppers into the town centre.

Many stallholders had opposed the market overhaul, particularly those who worked pitches on Westgate who had worked their for years and insisted they were the prime spots for trade in the town.

Despite the reservations and opposition, including many of the district councillors who felt the traders were being listened to, the plans were passed.

Mrs Allsop said: “Not everyone supported the changes and I accept you can’t please all of the people all of the time, but comments coming back from traders, shoppers and visitors and people from other authorities have been very positive - more positive than negative (but) there have been the odd negative.

“We can’t turn the clock back, we can’t put the supermarkets away, and we can’t take the world wide web and shove it back into the box where it came from.

“All those things are here and we have to deal with them.”