Markets across west Suffolk to close

The market on the Cornhill and Buttermarket in Bury St Edmunds
. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

The market on the Cornhill and Buttermarket in Bury St Edmunds . Picture: ANDY ABBOTT - Credit: Archant

West Suffolk Council is to close all markets to allow staff to be redeployed in the fight to tackle COVID-19 and its impact.

Market users and traders had been following social spacing and Government guidance with stalls spaced out to enable people to get essential food shopping.

The council said it had tried to keep the markets running as long as possible under the guidelines but operationally it could no longer be done as the numbers of traders and customers dwindled and demands on staff due to the impact of COVID-19 increased.

The closure will start from Tuesday March 31 and will cover Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket, Haverhill, Mildenhall, Brandon and Clare.

John Griffiths, leader of West Suffolk Council, said: “Having a market in our towns is part of their history. But these are extraordinary times and an operational decision had to be made in the face of dwindling numbers at the markets, increased demands on staff and safety.

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“Our staff can also be better used in other even more demanding areas to tackle the impact of COVID-19.

“I would like to thank all those who did use our markets and, of course, our traders for sticking to the rules and keeping people safe.

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“I recognise this may be a blow for some, but we will continue to work with traders on other initiatives and of course, as soon as we can safely, re-open the markets.”

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