New home for Blackpool's dislodged Abingdon Street market traders
Stallholders from Blackpool’s Abingdon Street market are set to continue trading in the town centre while the market is closed for refurbishment after new premises were found for them.
Businesses are being offered chance to temporarily relocate to the ground floor of the former Top Shop store in Victoria Street, while others could move to units in Corporation Street and Abingdon Street.
It is hoped they will be in their new premises in time to start trading when non-essential retail reopens on April 12 after lockdown.
Work to upgrade the market as part of a £3..6m investment package, will begin in coming months with traders set to return to the building in spring next year.
Business operators were told in February their leases would not be renewed in order to enable the refurbishment to take place.
Since then talks have been ongoing with the council, which bought the market last October.
Initially it was hoped to provide alternative accommodation in the Floral Hall inside the Winter Gardens, but the council could not get insurance cover.
Alan Cavill, director of communications and regeneration, said: “We have been working hard to find alternative temporary locations for all the stallholders.
“Despite the temporary setback with the insurance for the Floral Hall at the Winter Gardens, we are now in a position to finalise the details and get the traders back up and running as soon as possible.
“We are working very closely with the stallholders and a consultation process has been put into place with each tenant.
“The market’s appeal has declined in recent years and so the refurbishment will significantly enhance the experience not just for the customer, but will provide a vibrant and attractive place to work for the stallholders.
“It is time for the market to be restored and we can’t wait to get started.”
A planning application will be submitted in late April with the stripping out of existing fixtures and fittings expected to start in May, followed by the main contractor starting on site in July
As well as alternative premises in the former Top Shop, units will be available in
Corporation Street, Abingdon Street and Victoria Street for those needing refrigeration facilities.
Investment in the market is being funded through a £3.6m grant from the Government’s Getting Building Fund.
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