Shoppers return to Market Drayton's streets

Market Drayton townspeople are being urged to support local businesses as much as they safely can now after more than a year of on-off retail lockdown comes to an end – hopefully for the final time.

The outdoor market in Cheshire Street, Market Drayton
The outdoor market in Cheshire Street, Market Drayton

Free parking has been made available in the town car parks until April 25, to encourage shoppers to visit the town centre.

The Government's 'road map' out of lockdown gave the greenlight for 'non-essential' retailers to open their doors and begin trading again from Monday, April 12.

Indoor hospitality venues will still be waiting until May 17 to be able to serve again.

Mayor Roy Aldcroft said: "There certainly are more people about, a combination I think of the shops reopening and free parking being available – in particular hairdressers are open and people are going in there for quite a while.

"It's things like being able to go and get your hair cut and get your electronics and things like that.

"As people get used to the ideas of wearing a mask while shopping and social distancing, it should be great for the town.

"We have just got to encourage people to shop local because they really need the support now."

Events

Dan Thomas, proprietor of the Refill Emporium zero-waste shop in Cheshire Street, launched the Market Drayton Traders Community Interest Company with Daniel Derrington of the Town House restaurant and several other town shopkeepers.

He said there had been a noticeable uplift in footfall this week after restrictions were lifted.

"There's been a lot of people out and about in the town today.

"I've seen new customers I've never seen before in the shop. It seems to have been relatively safe, I think we just have to wait and see and time will tell.

"They're not queueing like they are in Primark!"

The traders' association plans to seize on the opportunity made available by the road map's plans, with a walking market set to be held on April 24.

The idea became popular in Market Drayton last summer between lockdowns – crafters, bakers and artists of all stripes set out their stalls outside their homes all over town and a map was produced so visitors and locals alike could tour the entirety of Market Drayton and find favourite new traders while seeing the landmarks.

Traders also hope to take part in a Fiver Fest later this summer – where businesses put on all manner of deals for £5. It was tried in the town last October thanks to the CIC.

Learn more and stay up to date with future events at facebook.com/MDTradersCIC.

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