Stallholders are gearing up for the move from Sheffield’s traditional Castle Market to a new £17 million home on The Moor.
Customers still have mixed feelings about the change but Ian Bingham, vice president of the Market Traders’ Federation, said businesses were enthusiastic – although details still have to be ironed out.
Traders are due to hear in the next fortnight details of what stalls they will be offered in the new market, Mr Bingham said.
Meanwhile, Star reader and keen amateur snapper Ken Webster, from Longley, has been around Castle Market photographing everyday scenes in the building’s last few months.
He has also taken pictures of a themed market on Fargate and progress on the new Moor Market, which is due to open in November.
The big change has not met with everybody’s approval at Castle Market.
Pensioner Betty France, from Handsworth, shopping at Mr Bingham’s stall, said: “I’ve been using the market for the last 30 years and come down twice a week.
“It’ll be a shame to see this place go – and my bus stops right outside. I hope changes are made so people can get to The Moor easily.”
But Abel Okede, a Methodist minister from Manor Top, said: “I’m quite looking forward to moving to a modern new building with better facilities.”
Mr Bingham, of Bingham and Brown’s fruit and vegetable stall, said: “I think everyone’s excited and just looking forward to the move – we’ve spent many years waiting.
“Traders are due to find out which stalls they have been allocated in the next couple of weeks.”
Mr Bingham said discussions are still taking place between traders and Sheffield Council about financial support during the change.
At present, some traders are being given help to fit out the stalls in return for one year’s discounted rent, whereas those receiving no help will get two years’ discount.
The first six months will be rent-free for all stallholders.
But Mr Bingham said: “We want everyone to have one year’s discount and help fitting out the new stalls. Discussions are ongoing about the issue.”
He added: “The majority of customers know we are going to move but there are still a few of the older generation who aren’t keen on change – worrying about things like buses.
“The buses go to where people want to get to and at the moment, The Moor is served by more routes than Castlegate. Where there is demand, other routes will change, too.”
The new Moor Market is due to open on November 18.
A total of 215 applications – some for several places – have now been made for 195 stalls at the Moor Market.
Around 80 of Castle Market’s 90 traders have applied to move, with others retiring.
Council officials have spent the last two months sifting through the applications to decide which traders will be successful.