Another market stall to close before £4.6m new build move

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Three market stall owners have said they will not be moving into the £4.6m redevelopment site. - Credit: Archant

Another long-established stall on Great Yarmouth Market Place has decided not to move when the new build is completed.

Barrie's tea owners, Melanie and Jimmy Wilson, posted their decision on the company's Facebook on Wednesday, November 17.

The tea stall - which has been on the market since 1950 - is the third business to decide against moving to the new £4.6m development.

A spokesperson for Great Yarmouth Borough Council said they were "sad to see them go" but added the new Market Place is designed to be a more attractive place for shoppers to visit.

Mel Wilson at Barries tea stall

Melanie Wilson, owner of Barrie's tea stall, said she has "to make the best of a bad situation". - Credit: James Weeds

Mrs Wilson, owner of Barrie's tea stall for the past 17 years, said: "What we're being offered doesn't match what we're being forced to lose.

"We've been watching the building as it's been going ahead and when we went to have a look at the unit they've offered us, I don't like it.

"I don't like us being level with the customers, there's no bin space.

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"It's not an easy decision to make and we have mixed emotions, but at the end of the day we have to make the best of a bad situation.

"It just wouldn't be the same without the market banter.

"And I don't like what the council have offered us.

"If I have got to invest in it - which I'm being forced to do - I've got to like what I'm investing in."

Mrs Wilson thanked her customers for their kind words.

"The response has been humbling and supportive," she added.

"It's very sad, but customers can see our reasoning.

"We're very sad to go."

Robin Platten by his chip stall.

Robin Platten said that he will not be moving into the new market building. - Credit: James Weeds

Other traders who have said they will not be moving into the new build, are butcher Philip Blake and chip stall owner Robin Platten.

Peter Nicholls at his fruit and veg stall.

Peter Nicholls will be retiring before he is required to move to the new market place. - Credit: James Weeds

Elsewhere on the market, Peter Nichols, who has been running his Fruit and Veg stall for 21 years, will be retiring before he will be required to move into the new market building.

"I'm packing up.

"The town centre's just about finished.

"There are out-of-town shops, retail units turned into banks and high charges for parking.

"Putting new stalls on the market isn't going to change anything.

"I would carry on for a few more years, but I certainly won't pay for the privilege."

Steven Carr, owner of Carr's chips stall, said: "Nobody's happy.

"As it stands, I will measure up the new units when they're finished before I make the decision to move or not."

What the council say

A Great Yarmouth Borough Council spokesman said: “Our new Market Place is designed to be a more attractive place for shoppers to come to, and we are pleased that the majority of current stall holders have decided to stay with us because they can see the benefits it will bring to them and the town.

“In some cases traders may have old equipment that needs updating, and we are offering interest-free loans to help them invest with us in the future of their businesses.

A redevelopment of Great Yarmouth's historic Market Place is a key part of the borough council's vis

A redevelopment of Great Yarmouth's historic Market Place is a key part of the borough council's vision to regenerate the town centre Picture: GYBC - Credit: Archant

“We know a handful of stalls have decided that the move isn’t for them and we will be sorry to see them go, but the majority of traders choosing to remain will enjoy long term leases for the first time and a much more pleasant environment for them and their customers.

“We have had lots of businesses approach us about joining the new market because of the improvements we are making.

"The new Market Place will be more energy efficient, have covered seating, pop-up spaces for start-up traders, and more room for events and entertainment.

“We hope all this will help retain existing customers and bring in new visitors for both the market and the whole town centre.”

What are the features of the new Market Place?

  • The new Market Place will have 25 main stalls.
  • There will also be two kiosk stalls and space for pop-up traders.
  • The design allows for covered seating for customers using the food and drink stalls.
  • The stalls will be well insulated to regulate temperature, and all light fittings will be low-energy LED lights.
  • The council is offering interest-free loans to existing traders to help with the costs of fitting out new stalls, such as renewing equipment earlier than otherwise planned.