Expansion of outdoor market and shop loyalty scheme is backed

Leyland Market traders with market manager Paula Halliwell (far left)
Leyland Market traders with market manager Paula Halliwell (far left)
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Leyland’s bustling market is set to show its loyalty to the town following news the outdoor stalls area could be expanded.

The Guardian launched its Support Our Town campaign last week to coincide with Leyland’s bid for a major cash boost from celebrity shopping expert Mary Portas.

One idea being put forward is to put market stalls on Hough Lane, instead of relying on the small space between the high street and the market entrance for outdoor stalls.

Now, the market’s manager has stepped forward to back the scheme, and it has also been announced the traders will be offering Loyal2Leyland reward cards like other businesses in the town.

Paula Halliwell, who has managed the market on Hough Lane for nine years, said: “We’ve been wanting to expand the outdoor market for a while now, because the indoor one has been full for the past four or five years.

“It’s really great that the market is doing so well, but it’s a shame we have to turn potential traders away, so we’d like to have more space for new stalls outside.

“We’d like there to be a farmer’s market feel on the high street on market days.”

Around 25 traders use the indoor market, and the small outdoor market caters for a handful of regular and casual traders.

Some set their stalls up on all three of Leyland’s market days – Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays – while others come once or twice a week.

“The range of stalls on the indoor market is fantastic,” Paula added. “I think that’s why Leyland is so successful, and creating a bigger outdoor market would be a good move for the town.”

South Ribble Council, business leaders and members of the community have come together to produce an application for the Portas Pilot scheme, which will see 12 towns across the country being offered a share of £1m from the government, as well as advice from Ms Portas, the ‘Queen of Shops’ herself.

The council has also revealed market traders will be taking part in the town’s Loyal2Leyland scheme, giving customers rewards for shopping locally.

Nearly 20 shops and businesses have signed up in the town – up from the 10 on board six months ago – and more are showing interest.

How YOU can show your support for Leyland -

Sign the Portas Pilot petition currently being circulated around shops in the town centre, or click the ‘like’ button on the town’s Facebook page www.facebook.com/VisitLeyland

To become involved in the Guardian’s Support Our Town campaign, call Kay Taylor on 01257 264911, or email kay.taylor@lep.co.uk

We want to run regular features about Leyland’s success stories and plans for the future, such as events and new business ventures.