City centre sets out stall for first night market

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SHEFFIELD will stage its first city centre night market next week.

Around 30 stalls will be located in Barkers Pool on Wednesday from 3pm to 10pm in what is hoped to be the first of a series of monthly events to the end of the year.

The market is being described as a showcase for Sheffield arts and crafts, although some of the stalls will feature the work of local charities and others will sell food and drink.

“It’s for Sheffield businesses promoting Sheffield,” said co-organiser James Peterson, of JC Market Events, who picked up on the concept while living in China where night markets are a way of life.

“The majority of people, especially businesses, are saying it’s a great idea.

“Businesses from Ecclesall Road to Hillsborough are saying it is an opportunity to sell their produce.”

Some shops in the city centre stay open late on Wednesdays and both the market organisers and the council hope that the new attraction will generate extra ‘footfall’ at a time when many retailers are suffering from the economic downturn.

Initially, it was planned to launch the market last February, and to run it from 8am until 9pm, but stallholders did not relish the prospect of standing for such a long time in freezing temperatures.

Although other markets are due to be held on the second Wednesday of the month, there may be variations so that they coincide with popular events at the neighbouring City Hall.

The launch is on the same night that comedian Sarah Millican is in Sheffield.