On reading the article by Mr Pickles, 26th January 2012, on the communities and local government website here, which can also be found on our website along with some others. We are told that;
“In the next few weeks the Markets Alliance, the umbrella organisation of the markets industry, will publish a special pamphlet and webpage with guidance to help market managers get involved in the scheme.”
The campaign is of great interest to us here at the mill and so we embarked on a mission to learn more. Unfortunately what we did learn had nothing to do with the campaign, but a lot about the state of play in the industry, first stop Markets Alliance.
When you arrive at the Markets Alliance site here, you will find very little content, in fact only a few pages with 4 or 5 links to document dating back to 2007! The site has no search facility, not that you would need it, as the site has very little content.
I am a little confused about the role of the Alliance, from the website. . .“The Markets Alliance works to promote and support best practice in all aspects of establishing and operating markets in the UK.” I would have to ask where this actual information is kept, if not on the website? and if not, why not. If it is indeed The “umbrella organisation of the markets industry” it does not do a very good job in representing itself, at least as so far as its presence on the web is concerned. However, the site does mention that the Alliance has members, and currently the members are:
So Best to find out more about the “Love your local market” campaign from these alliance members, you would think anyway.
Association of London Markets, is a three page website with no up to date information about the campaign and no search facility, so I moved on.
Association of Town Centre Management. I was quite taken back when I realised the atcm, for such a high profile industry group, had no search facility on their site! I did an in-browser search but came up with no results for “Love your local market”
Country Markets. While they do have a search facility, typing in “love your local market” gave no results.
On to the Nation Association of British Market Authorities, or the nabma, who are very active and have a very high profile in the industry, but search for “love your local markets” and again you get no results, which I find completely intriguing. Update, they do have mention of the campain in the news ticker, however there is no link or any other further information
National Farmers Retail and Markets Association. Unfortunately FARMA limit the number of characters you can type in the search box, and could not get past “love your local mark”, which was completely useless.
In summary then, even though the campaign “Love your local market” has been announced by the Government, and it is aligned with some very prominent industry groups, It is extraordinary that no further information, not even a mention can be found on any of these sites whom come under the umbrella of the Markets Alliance, indeed the Alliance itself has nothing, what hope then for the industry, if its level of representation is so lacking in basic information for people to access.
We at the mill are very interested in the details for this campaign, and yes, search our site and you will get results, which is more than I can say of the established industry professionals whom are supposed to be promoting and supporting this along side the government, certainly as they are part of the Alliance.
Is this lack of information because the government has yet to finalise the content, who knows, but if you where a market manager looking or information on this campaign, as was suggested by the announcement, I would imagine you maybe wondering what happened, as are we, especially given we are now entering the fourth week and still no information is available.
*UPDATE* February 24, 2012
Finally something is mentioned about the campaign, and from a Market Alliance Member, the nabma, who have published a short article HERE So for all of those who are interested, we are promised more information in the next dew days, lets keep an eye on this.
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