January 9, 2012 Brighton and Hove City Council
The transformation of Brighton’s historic Open Market starts next week – beginning with the relocation of market traders to a specially-built, temporary home in nearby Francis Street.
A variety of stallholders will trade from the new base between Ditchling Road and London Road, starting on Monday July 9. They will be selling a range of goods including flowers, eggs and bacon, pet food and supplies, haberdashery, fish, fruit, veg and groceries alongside the market café.
Housing association, The Hyde Group, will then begin work on the £18m major transformation of the old market – beginning with demolition scheduled to start mid January.
The revitalised market – to be run as a community enterprise by market traders, the council and Hyde – will provide 44 new permanent covered market stalls, 12 creative workshops for arts, crafts and creative people selling their own work. A large central square will have space for activities, entertainment and specialist visiting markets.
The regeneration of the market will be funded by an enabling development of 87 affordable homes by Hyde, built for local people. Major environmental improvements to Francis Street will see it become an attractive shared space for cars, cyclists and pedestrians.
Around 100 full time equivalent jobs will be created by the completed scheme. A further 80 full time jobs will be created during construction. A range of training and apprenticeship opportunities for local people are being provided as part of an onsite training and skills academy being set up by Hyde, working closely with City College.
It is expected the project will be completed in the summer of 2013.
Council representative and cabinet member Cllr Ian Davey said: “It’s such a proud moment to get this major project off the ground for the city. It should provide a catalyst for the regeneration of London Road and become a real hub of the community.”
Hyde’s development manager, Tom Shaw, said: “Hyde has worked tirelessly with the council and the market traders to reach this exciting first stage. We’re delighted to see the traders opening for business in their temporary home, and very much look forward to welcoming them back in 2013 when the transformation will be completed.”
CIC director and traders’ representative Paul Reynolds said: “It’s an historic day and the start of a new era for the market. The retailing expert Mary Portas has been talking recently about how markets can regenerate shopping areas and get businesses started and that’s how we see the future. In the meantime I’d urge people to keep shopping at the market’s temporary base in Francis Street from Monday.”
A market was first established in the area after the first world war, when mainly ex-servicemen started trading from barrows in nearby Oxford Street.
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