Day of celebration for city’s weekly market

Market day on Ripon's square.
Market day on Ripon's square.

Visitors to Ripon Market are in for a treat on Thursday, May 21, with a day of entertainment planned to celebrate the national Love Your Local Market fortnight (May 13-27).

The day also marks the official opening of the new market layout which has been trialled since March as part of an eight-week trial.

Started in 2012 amid fears about the sustainability of our nation’s high streets, Love Your Local Market participants have staged over 11,000 events highlighting the importance markets play in the heart of our communities, not only for retail but as valuable community assets that provide a focal point.

Entertainment on the day in Ripon will include performances by the Rhythm Deluxe Jazz Band Quartet and children of Class Four from St Wilfrid’s Catholic Primary School Choir. There will also be a range of demonstrations from traders including Sri Lankan cookery, cake decorating, floral art and hanging basket design.

Graham Wilson OBE, Chief Executive of the National Association of British Market Authorities, said: “Love Your Local Market is the biggest market event in a generation. It gives people the chance of a new career and demonstrates how important the market is to the local community.

“With the financial backing of the Government and our headline sponsor HMY Radford we intend to make Love Your Local Market 2015 once again the biggest and best markets campaign UK has ever seen.”

In March, an eight-week trial was held to gauge customer and trader opinion on the revamped layout for 76 stalls aimed at improving the flow of shoppers, provide more space to sit and relax and encourage the public to explore all the stalls.

After receiving positive feedback from both traders and customers, the proposal is to introduce the layout permanently.

Harrogate Borough Council Leader, Coun Richard Cooper, said : “Ripon market is an integral part of city life and it is important that we do all we can to ensure that it continues to flourish both now and in the future.

“Love Your Local Market is a wonderful way of highlighting the market’s value to the community.”