Bury St Edmunds/ Haverhill: Young entrepreneurs wanted to man west Suffolk youth markets

Jon Vale,
West Suffolk reporter jon.vale@archant.co.uk
Friday, March 7, 2014
12:33 PM

Young entrepreneurs in west Suffolk have been given another boost with the announcement of a unique market day dedicated to aspiring stallholders.

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Youth markets will take over Saturday’s typical market day in both Bury St Edmunds and Haverhill during May’s “Love Your Local Market” fortnight, where anyone aged 16-24 can apply to run their own stall.

It comes in the same week that Bury was announced as one of seven towns across the country involved in the Carnegie UK Trust’s TestTown initiative, where young entrepreneurs will be given vacant shops to try out their prospective business.

The youth market plans were revealed by Sharon Fairweather, the new market development officer for St Edmundsbury and Forest Heath, at this week’s meeting of the Bury Working Party.

She said: “This could suit art and design students, craft students, fashion students - any students that have got a product or service that they’d like to promote.

“The demographic for a market is an older person. We’ve really got to look at how markets are going to survive, and that would mean putting new products into the market, new life and new vibrancy.

“This has been proved in many other markets, and I don’t know that Bury is quite ready for some of those things yet, but it’s certainly something we’re going to be working on in the next few months.”

Mrs Fairweather said she is working with West Suffolk College in the lead-up to the event, and there will be a prize for the best stallholder in both towns.

She added: “Markets now are very, very important in the social and economic make-up of a town. Retail is changing quite dramatically, there’s a lot more internet-based shopping and people need a reason to go into town.

“This is why St Edmundsbury is looking at our market towns and how they survive.”

Anyone aged 16-30 is eligible to apply for the TestTown initiative. For more information visit www.testtown.org.uk. To apply to be part of the youth market contact Sharon Fairweather at sharon.fairweather@westsuffolk.gov.uk or 01284 757093.

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