Plans to revamp Pontefract and Normanton Markets put forward

Planning applications to renovate two local markets have been submitted by Wakefield Council.

Thursday, 1st July 2021, 12:33 pm
Updated Thursday, 1st July 2021, 12:36 pm

The front of Pontefract s Market Hall could be refurbished, while Normanton's outdoor market is likely to be consolidated into a smaller space and get new lighting, according to proposals put forward this month.

Both ideas, which were first coined last year, are subject to planning permission.

The council set aside £5m worth of cash for revamping the Wakefield district's six markets in January 2020.

Pontefract Market Hall

Brief notes accompanying the council's application for Pontefract's Market Hall indicate that the front doors would be replaced, its shutters redecorated and repairs would be carried out on the stonework along the front of the building.

At Normanton Market, the authority wants to demolish eight free-standing stalls, which have been deemed unnecessary would almost halve the current unit capacity at the venue.

However, the proposals include the installation of lights for the remaining stalls and a new bin storage area.

Speaking earlier this month, before the plans were formally submitted, the council's Cabinet member for regeneration, Darren Byford said: "Wakefield’s markets are an integral part of our town and city centre retail and leisure experience, contributing to their sustainability and vibrancy.

"Local town centre data shows that our markets have also been successful in supporting new businesses to grow and move onto the high street, further supporting the strength of our town centres.

"This is a positive step for our markets and that is why we look forward to being able to deliver this significant and much-needed investment over the next 12 months."

Traders in Pontefract gave a mixed reception to the council's overall plan to improve local markets, when they were first announced alongside the £5m package last year.

Some suggested the prospect of a brighter and better lit market hall could boost footfall, though others questioned whether the decline in the popularity of markets could ever be reversed.

Local Democracy Reporting Service