Rochdale Market is being closed with the last trading day set for Monday, 14 October 2019 the council have announced
Over the past year the number of traders regularly attending the market has halved and it is not financially viable.
According to the council there have been four days over the past year, including two Saturdays, when no traders turned up, and on nine others, only one trader was present.
“Although we’ve been successful in attracting new businesses into vacant shops in the town centre (more than 20 have moved in since 2015), there has not been the same level of interest in the market.” they say in a statement.
The council took over the running the market after the Exchange Shopping Centre, where it was previously based, was sold.
In 2017, as part of efforts to maintain and enhance it, an external operator was selected but the relationship ended after failing to live up to expectations.
The council then took control of the market again, including the renovated indoor section, in October 2018 but the quality and number of traders has not improved.
On 47 of the 151 markets days held since 1 October 2018 there have been fewer than 5 traders.
When costs are deducted the market is currently losing between £3,000 and £4,000 a month.
Efforts to maintain the market, including giving rent-free periods to traders and subsidising bills, have not been successful. Outdoor traders were also given the opportunity to run the outdoor market themselves but their proposals, which were considered carefully, were not viable.
Special events, which have worked well since they were introduced, will continue say the council and they will look to build on these in the future.
“The market hall is in a prime location in the heart of Rochdale town centre and we will be working on alternative use for this important building going forward.”