scraps plan to move Burnham-On-Sea's farmers markets
councillors last night (Monday) voted to reject a controversial
plan to move Burnham-On-Sea's farmers markets out of the High
debated whether the monthly markets should be moved into nearby
Adam Street in a bid to reduce "disruption to the town centre."
first reported here,
Cllr Neville Jones, below, had proposed that the events
be moved to help town centre businesses.
Jones said: "I'm all for keeping the farmers markets, but
traders here in Burnham already pay the highest business rates
in Sedgemoor and they don't need the markets hurting their trade.
Closing the High Street on the last Friday of each month for five
hours causes a lot of disruption," he said.
Phillip Wookey of Somerset Farmers Markets said at Monday's meeting
that the proposed new site for the markets in Adam Street would
be "completely unsuitable."
added: "It is too small, too narrow, has insufficient footfall,
and is too exposed to the prevailing weather."
considering the comments and further debating the issue, Cllr
Paul Young proposed that the markets stay where they are in the
High Street. A majority of councillors agreed with him in a vote
and the motion was therefore carried and there will be no change.
to the news, Mr Wookey told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "I am extremely
pleased about this sensible decision. It removes the uncertainty
for our traders and for the market's future."
speaking after last night's meeting, Cllr Jones added: "I've
always made it clear that I am not against the farmers market,
just that it causes too much disruption in the High Street on
12 days a year and, far from helping local businesses, it hurts
them. It's a shame the council is not taking this discussion further
- I don't think everyone fully understood what I was proposing."
had initially deferred their decision last month until February
2015 to allow members time to walk around the market area and
see in detail the proposed changes - but now no further meetings
will be needed.
Centre Manager Bev Milner Simonds told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "The
farmers market is a vital part of the retail mix of Burnham town
centre. At present, we don't have a fresh independent fruit and
veg shop and only one butcher so the market does help to bring
choice and variety into the town centre."
of councillors debating the matter. They considered holding off
on a decision until a meeting in the town centre in February,
but eventually voted not to move the market.