Market gets MP’s approval

Andy Burnham MP lending a hand at Leigh Market
Andy Burnham MP lending a hand at Leigh Market

LEIGH MP Andy Burnham wants the council to improve one of the town’s most valuable assets.

Mr Burnham has drawn up a five-point plan, which he hopes the council will adopt, to improve Leigh’s traditional Lancashire market.

The market has remained stronger than many others throughout the region during the economic downturn, but the MP says it is still one of the town’s ‘hidden treasures’.

And his five-point plan calls for:

l The council to consider allowing shoppers visiting the market to park for free for an hour, rather than the current 30 minutes

l Better sign-posting to help first-time shoppers find the Gas Street venue, including a new sign on the building itself

l Funding to improve the building

l Using social media to promote the market, especially among younger people, and to develop a new marketing campaign

l Ensuring the new terminal for the Leigh Guided Busway, which could bring shoppers in from as far away as Salford, has prominent adverts to promote and guide people to the market.

Mr Burnham started his campaign after being given a tour of the market to meet traders, accompanied by the Leigh Centurions’ Richie Blackmore, as part of the Love Your Market campaign.

Mr Burnham said: “It’s time we did a better job of selling what Leigh has got to offer.

“We don’t want our market to be a ‘hidden treasure’ because I think many people don’t realise the quality and sheer range of things available. I had a Shetland oyster, a meat-and-potato pie, a smoothie made to order and some proper Everton mints.

“Leigh Market, and indeed the whole town centre, has a brilliant opportunity with the arrival of a new town centre terminal for the Guided Busway.

“With an attractive modern terminal in easy reach of The Loom, the Spinning Gate, Bradshawgate shops and the Market, Leigh could be transformed as a shopping and leisure destination.”