Urgent market decision needed

Retail expert Mary Portas says our town centres have reached crisis point and is warning that unless urgent action is taken they will die.

She had carried out a survey on behalf of the government.

Last year consultants did the same for Derbyshire Dales District Council and our own traders pretty much voiced the same concerns.

They wanted an end to red tape hindering their businesses and a cut in car parking charges.

Shoppers are also calling for change and in the last couple of weeks have demanded action to save our markets.

Mary Portas suggests a national market day and Ludlow, in Shropshire, has turned around its town centre’s fortunes by introducing a new market which has drawn in the shoppers.

Our Matlock market must be one of the poorest in the region but it could be the saviour of our town centre.

The council is currently proposing to make changes to how it is run but top of that list must be to attract more stalls.

The best way to do that would be to make a decision about where it is going to be held and take away the uncertainty about the future of the site.

Traders aren’t going to commit time and energy to a market which may be swallowed up as part of a development any time soon.

Amanda Hatfield, editor