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Moves over Dereham markets

PUBLISHED: 13:21 29 October 2008 | UPDATED: 14:47 07 July 2010

Dereham's markets could finally be held back in their rightful place in the town's Market Place, under a scheme proposed by town bosses.

The Friday market has had to be moved to the Cowper Road car park for years because of a plan to create a new bus interchange in the town centre.

Dereham's markets could finally be held back in their rightful place in the town's Market Place, under a scheme proposed by town bosses.

The Friday market has had to be moved to the Cowper Road car park for years because of a plan to create a new bus interchange in the town centre.

And the town's farmers market has never run in Market Place. The Friday market has been in the Cowper road car park since 1987 it came back in 2006 for three weeks while the car park was being refurbished.

Norfolk County Council bosses said it would not be safe to hold the large market in the area until safety concerns around busses in the town centre were addressed.

But now Dereham Town Council's markets and buildings committee has agreed a potential way forward - although it could cost about £60 per week.

Town clerk Tony Needham has come up with an idea which would bypass having to overturn a traffic order which wouldn't allow the market to be moved back yet.

“We have been told that it would not be possible to move the markets back until the bus interchange was in place,” he told the committee on Tuesday night.

“Talking to police and highways officials it became clear that if we can fit all the market stalls in to the parking bays in market Place, as on a Tuesday, they would not have any objection on grounds of safety.

“But because there is a traffic order in place we had to find a way around that.

“We can apply for a temporary traffic regulation order for each market. It is regularly done for visiting French markets.”

However, as the temporary orders are meant for one off events it has to be discovered if the council will be allowed to submit one every week, or in bulk, for weekly markets.

“There is nothing to say we cannot do that but we have asked for clarification,” said Mr Needham.

There were concerns the Friday market would be too big to fit in the Tuesday market space but it was suggested to look for other areas to use, like Nelson Place or Red Lion Street.

And despite costing £60 per week the committee agreed to support the idea.

There will be a four month 30pc winter discount for stall holders on the market. The discount rate was used last year and was seen as being very popular.

The Cowper Road toilets are to be opened seven days per week for six months, councillors on the town's markets and buildings committee agreed.

They also agreed to push ahead with plans to refurbish the Barwell Court toilets, “as soon as and as well as practically possible”.

They are to seek ideas and estimates over what could be done with the toilets there, including looking at new toilets in Attleborough and Swaffham and pod style toilets.

Over six months they will also look at what to do long term with the Cowper Road toilets, whether to have a new block in the new Wrights Walk shopping centre or look at a seeing if shops are willing to open up their toilets to the public more.

Cllr Michael Fanthorpe said: “A town is judged by the standard of its toilets.”

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