Chris Worfolk's Blog


A market for markets?

It’s hard to ignore the fact that Kirkgate Market, Europe’s largest indoor market, is empty. In it’s lower halls, up to 30% of the stalls are vacant; it’s like a ghost town in there sometimes.

So, Leeds City Council have put some money into trying to work out how to fix it. And indeed, they staged a big public consultation, where everyone was invited to come down and find out what their research had done.

Turning up to it, I walked into a room with one hundred chairs laid out – and one other person there. I was a little late, and nobody else turned up behind me. Apparently, there are only two members of the public that are interested in the future of Kirkgate Market.

They have also set up an information centre where you can pop in to. So, I did that today, asking for basic information like what the footfall levels are and what research they have done on shopper profiles. They didn’t have any. So much for bringing more traders in with a helpful information centre.

I did get one useful piece of advice though – looking at one of the vacant stalls, a trader overheard our conversation and proceeded to talk to us at length about the amount of traders closing down and trying to get out.

Things are looking bleak indeed for the market.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 28th, 2012 at 11:17 am and is filed under Thoughts. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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