PLANS are in place to help drive business in to Scarborough’s historic indoor market this Christmas.
In a move to boost trade at the Market Hall a host of activities have been lined up throughout December to pull in customers.
Scarborough’s newly appointed Investment Manager Nick Taylor is pushing the scheme, which he plans to expand in to the long term.
He said: “Each stall down there is a local enterprise, and at times like this we need to be encouraging local enterprise.
“We want to encourage the traders down there, and we also want to encourage people to go down to the Market Hall and shop local.
“The Market Hall and Vaults are a gem of a place and we need to make sure people know what they have right on their doorstep.
“We have got all sorts of things going on over Christmas which will hopefully attract some new customers.”
Activities lined up in the run up to Christmas include carol singing every Saturday throughout December. A Christmas choir will visit the Market Hall at 11am every Saturday before going in to the Market Vaults at 1pm. Everyone is invited to join in the singing, and stall holders will be joining in the sing song.
Plans are also in place for a cookery demonstration with Yorkshire Coast College, lined up for December 11. Students and lecturers will be visiting the Market Hall to show people how to cook various things over Christmas using produce from the Market.
The cafe within the Market Hall has also been extended so people can spent more time
Efforts are also in place to create an customer database, so weekly newsletters, featuring offers and news can be emailed to local shoppers.
To push the idea Mr Taylor has organised a Christmas E Draw, in which people leave their names and email addresses and are entered in to a draw to win one of more than 50 prizes, all sourced from the Market.
The bid to drive business is not just for Christmas though, as a scheme is being put together to put the Market Hall on the shopping map long term.
Mr Taylor said: “It is all about encouraging local enterprise. The Market Hall is just as important as the business park as it is all about promoting local businesses.
“We are not just trying to get customers down to the Market we want to get new businesses down there too and make it a thriving hub of trade.
“We need to be encouraging shoppers to visit that part of town more.
“One idea we have had it to hold a regular outdoor farmers market in the area, possibly St Helen’s Square, which will help attract people to the area.
“Another idea is to move the Shrove Tuesday celebrations down to the market too.
“We are investigating a lot of possibilities, but one thing is for certain the Market Hall is a key place for us in terms of driving investment.
“What has happened is no one has really said anything about the market for a while and it has almost become forgotten. We need to speak up for it, let people know what it offers and what a great asset it is to local people.”