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South Kesteven District Council investigating options to move Bourne Market

South Kesteven District Council is exploring options to relocate Bourne market to a more “visible” location.

Bourne Market is currently held every Thursday, hosting around 20 traders, both casual and regular. There is also a smaller market on Saturdays.

After receiving feedback from potential customers and traders, the council’s market manager is reviewing the market’s current location in the Corn Exchange Car Park as well as considering alternative sites to help revitalise it.

Bourne Market
Bourne Market

Bourne Austerby ward Coun Rhys Baker (Green Party) said he had heard “mythical stories” about the market once hosting dozens of stalls, but he believes it could be performing much better.

He explained that in the last few days, he received a “very encouraging” email from Coun Paul Stokes (Independent), cabinet member for leisure and culture, about exploring new ways to rejuvenate the beloved market.

“The biggest thing that concerns me is the number of people that don’t use the market at all,” said Coun Baker, insisting that a more central location, where more people could casually stroll through, would be a great way to attract more visitors.

Coun Rhys Baker
Coun Rhys Baker

“Because it’s tucked away, you don’t tend to pass through that area. As things stand, you don’t tend to go to Bourne Market unless you want to go to Bourne Market.”

Although he said it was still “early days,” he pinpointed two locations that could make suitable spots for the market: opposite The Old Town Hall on North Road and outside the Post Office on West Road.

Coun Baker acknowledged that these locations would necessitate road closures, and suggested changing the market days to six Saturdays a year, making it more of an “event” for people to attend.

Bourne Market
Bourne Market

On the other hand, if the market were to stay in its current location, the Green Party councillor feels it needs much more promotion to direct people there.

“Nothing is set in stone, I’m just starting a conversation here,” he added.

“Our Grantham and Stamford markets are amazing, bustling places and I want to see Bourne have the same.”

Coun Stokes added: “Whilst many customers are happy with the current location of the Bourne Market on Thursdays we have received feedback from potential customers and new traders that the market could be more ‘visible.’

“This is something that was looked at pre-covid. The market worked extremely well during Covid but we now want to explore options that may be available to improve and expand the market offer.

“As such our Markets Manager is reviewing the use of the current space and any alternative options that might be available or that might make visibility better. It is indeed early days in this process.”

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