Friends of Burton Market                  Home Page (of Glencoe House Publications)

At the end of July 2013, Burton Market Hall closed for a year.

At the same time, Burton's Market Square was cleared of all outdoor traders.
Trading on the square was to cease permanently, and in its place,
events were to be held on the square.

The Market Hall reopened in spring/summer 2014, 
but without our former market hall traders.
There are no food traders in the market hall (2017).

In 2014, the decision of the Council, which barred outdoor trading 
on the Market Square, was reversed. 
Outdoor trading then returned to the Market Square, 
but on a much reduced scale, e.g., 1 greengrocer (2017).


How did Burton lose its former market hall traders?

In 2013, plans for new changes to Burton's Market Hall 
were created from the 'top down'.
Input from market traders and market shoppers was ignored.

The market hall was to be closed for a year.
The negotiations with the indoor traders did not include 
an initial reduced-rent following their return to the market hall,
to allow them to build up custom again.  
Consequently, those traders who could, retired, 
and those who couldn't, went elsewhere or packed it in.
(In the end, reduced-rent deals with NEW traders trying to build custom
in our market hall, were struck.  It's very regrettable this
wasn't offered to our former traders.) 

Those at the top who were behind the market changes included:

Stephen Hinds, head of Asset Management (the department 
in charge of the market hall).  He was a key force 
behind the changes to our market.  Mr Hinds resigned in July 2013,
 just before the market hall closed.  

Paul Howard, the Town Centre Manager, supported the changes. 
Mr Howard left in December 2013, 
months following the reopening of the market hall.

Richard Grosvenor, Leader of Burton Council at the time, 
was a key supporter of the new market plans. 
The decisions regarding Burton Market, supported by and implemented 
under Mr. Grosvenor's previous leadership, are his legacy.

The staff currently in charge of the market hall have inherited a very 
difficult job, possibly an impossible one:  that of reviving Burton market hall. 
When the previous market hall traders of years-long standing 
were not retained, Burton lost the one thing a market needs to survive:
its customer base.  

Building a customer base from scratch takes years.

To sell fresh produce a main draw on a market, you must sell 
enough to keep your stock turning over. For this, you need a sufficient 
customer base which, prior to the changes, Burton Market had.

I would not know how to revive a market that's been 
so thoroughly and willfully dismantled as Burton Market had been.
My sympathies are with the staff put in charge of reviving this market.
If they can't revive it, they are not the ones to point the finger at.