Market gets space to thrive

ALL we need is some decent snow now and Ipswich Cornhill will start to look like a real Dickensian scene, at least on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.The success of the last few months has led to another significant step with the arrival of the Evening Star's Christmas tree – a step which must give traders and council planners food for thought.

ALL we need is some decent snow now and Ipswich Cornhill will start to look like a real Dickensian scene, at least on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

The success of the last few months has led to another significant step with the arrival of the Evening Star's Christmas tree – a step which must give traders and council planners food for thought.

Since its arrival on the Cornhill in May, the market has been strictly limited to the square in front of the Town Hall.

However the arrival of the Christmas tree means some of this space is taken up and some of the stalls have had to make the leap across the former road to the square in front of the old post office.


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Has this meant the end of civilisation as we know it? Has it made the town centre look untidy?

Not on your life – it's actually made the place feel much busier and improved the look of the area on market days.

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And now the town's market is starting to build up a wider reputation, I understand there are already regular market buses from Diss.

Now an enterprising company from Cambridge is starting to bring shoppers to Ipswich, with one of the main selling points being "One of East Anglia's most popular markets."

You wouldn't have heard that a few months ago when it was languishing on the Civic Centre car park.

We've often heard that it can't expand because there is no more space on the Cornhill, but why can't stalls be set up in front of the old Post Office throughout the year?

For the Christmas overspill, there's still space underneath the Lloyds Avenue arch – and then the market could start is natural expansion up Lloyds Avenue itself.

Maybe thinking like that is running before we can walk – but at least it proves that the market is thriving almost a year after it looked as if it might have to close for ever.

MORE than a year after Iain Duncan Smith became leader of the Conservative Party, he's still clearly got problems within the organisation.

I'd heard he was coming to Suffolk as part of his tour of the country – so I rang Conservative Central Office in London to find out about these plans.

"I understand Iain Duncan Smith is visiting the area soon, could you give me some details?" I asked.

"Who's going to East Anglia?" The press officer replied.

"Iain Duncan Smith." I replied. "The party leader."

"Oh, him," came the reply.

If there are recognition problems within his own headquarters, then IDS really is up against it!

I'VE been trying really hard to understand the arguments against park and ride in the Martlesham/Kesgrave area.

Is it because residents would rather their roads were clogged by 20 cars than a couple of buses?

Is it because such a valuable piece of land used by thousands of local residents every weekend will be swallowed up?

Is it because no one will use it – they'll continue to use Tesco Martlesham's car park and the Superoute 66 buses?

Or is it just that the people of Kesgrave and Martlesham are lucky enough to enjoy a good bus service already and don't want anyone else to travel in such smart vehicles?

Somehow I think the answers will soon be in the post!

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