Traders move on as shutters come down

Stallholders Chris Fallows (Furniture Solutions 4U) and Barbara Whittaker (Victorian Arts and Crafts) prepare to shut up shop.

Stallholders Chris Fallows (Furniture Solutions 4U) and Barbara Whittaker (Victorian Arts and Crafts) prepare to shut up shop.

9
Have your say

Traders preparing to bring the shutters down on their businesses in a shopping precinct have labelled it a “sad” time for the town.

Poulton’s Market Hall will close on Saturday after Dransfield Properties, the owners, decided not to renew the lease.

Traders were told in January they would have to leave the building and find another location for their shops.

Many have been successful in doing so and have already started selling from their new premises, which are dotted around the market town.

Chris Fallows, 55, runs Furniture Solutions in the Market Hall and has decided to stay until the last day of trading before moving into his new shop on Tithebarn Street.

He said: “It’s sad for everyone in Poulton, not just the traders.

“A lot of people come here because it’s all under one roof and they could go shopping, get their hair done or have a coffee and it was a shopping centre where everybody knew each other.”

Michelle Sykes, 47, runs Lily’s Tea Room and is relocating to Chapel Street.

She said: “It’s been a stressful time because it involves my business, family and livelihood, so it’s been hard.

“I hope I will be able to move forward now, I just have to give it my best shot.

“Every business needs people to support it and I’m getting that in Poulton.”

Dransfield Properties has not yet announced its plans for the future of the building.

Amanda Holmes, from Dransfield Properties, said: “We are extremely sad about the closure of the Market Hall.

“When we bought it three years ago there were very few tenants and it would almost certainly have closed at that point if we had not taken it on and managed it with a view to bringing forward a wider regeneration scheme in the town.”

Follow us on twitter @The_Gazette and like our page on facebook to keep up with all the latest news.