Pity the poor market traders, the few brave souls that are left.
Once again, it would appear that they are about to be treated like pieces of street furniture to be shunted about.
Not for their benefit but to shore up some outdated concept of Mansfield as a vibrant market town.
It seems that neither politicians nor officers have learned anything about the fragility of market trading. The results of past tinkering and misguided schemes are clear for all to see.
Granted, the landscape of retail trading changed for ever many years ago but the council must accept that the resurfacing of the Market Place was the last straw that broke the backs of many old established businesses.
The few traders who cling on do so because of the better footfall in Westgate which was, after all, our original market place before the 19th clearance of the Shambles.
Market traders have never had a problem competing with anyone on value for money, knowing their trade and giving good personal service but what they must have is stability and dedicated market days of two, or no more than three days per week.
With the superstores now into everyone’s trade, being weather-proof and providing free parking it is nothing short of a miracle that there are any market traders left at all !
From time to time we read claptrap from the politicians about attracting more traders, as if they can be invented! These comments would be laughable if the subject were not so tragic.
Ex Mansfield shopkeeper and 45 years a market trader.
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