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Taking a look back at Fleetwood Market four decades ago

Jack Lea'at Fleetwood Market in July 1981
Jack Lea'at Fleetwood Market in July 1981

The market started out life in 1840. Market rights were granted to Fleetwood Market in 1725, but it wasn’t until 1840 that Sir Peter Hesketh started using them, and a Victorian market was built in the port.

The original market was surrounded by a stone wall, with a wooden access gate at each end.

Jack Lea, pictured working at Fleetwood Market in July 1981

Jack Lea, pictured working at Fleetwood Market in July 1981

In the middle of the open area was a basic wooden building, with a slate roof, providing shelter for the stalls from which local people sold farm produce and traders from Manchester sold textiles and clothing. Later on, a cattle market was also added.

After Sir Peter died, the market was sold to the town of Fleetwood, in 1890.

Two years later, the present stone building was constructed – which included offices and living accommodation for staff over the years.

The building has stayed true to its Victorian heritage over the last century, and has changed very little.

In 1990, the market was extended, making it one of the biggest in the North West.

Our black-and-white archive photographs show the busy and bustling Fleetwood Market, at its best, during the 1980s. Jack Lea is shown enthusiastically serving customers.