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Executive Leader Cllr Brenda Warrington

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Councillor Brenda Warrington, Executive Leader of Tameside Council

Investing in Our Markets

Thursday, 26 August 2021

Before I begin my blog this week I want to sound a note of caution about the state of coronavirus in Tameside. Our infection rate at the beginning of this week was 365.0 per 100,000 people, an increase of 16% from the last week and currently the highest rate in Greater Manchester. I want to emphasise that while this is concerning, there is no reason to panic. A higher rate of infection was expected following the lifting of most restrictions, and our vaccination take-up is higher than the national average with 80.8% of adults having had at least one vaccination, and 71.5% having had both their doses. That being said we must continue to remain cautious, and I would urge anybody who has not yet received their vaccinations to get them as soon as possible. Not only will you be protecting yourself and others, you’ll also be doing your bit to bring the level of new cases down across the borough.

However, as we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic we’re also beginning to look at how we can provide support for our town centres and businesses to help them not just recover, but thrive. Taking inspiration from similar towns in Greater Manchester, and working closely with the specialist event group The Market Co, we have launched two new monthly cultural events in Ashton and Stalybridge.

Ashton Artisan Market

 

Launched back in April 2021, Ashton Artisan Market has quickly established itself as a great afternoon out for all the family. The attendance figures have only gone up every month, with people from within and beyond Tameside paying a visit to over 100 stalls selling high quality street food and handmade goods, while soaking up the vibrant atmosphere and live entertainment. The next Artisan Market takes place this Saturday, and if you haven’t yet I would encourage you to come to have a look and see what all the fuss is about.

But the Ashton Artisan Market is far from the only specialist event we’re holding in the town. The Ashton Farmer’s Market takes place on the last Sunday of every month, and the third Saturday of the month sees a Craft and Cake Market take over the square. Don’t forget as well that our award-winning and hugely popular Market Hall is open every day, with a variety of regular traders selling high-quality food and goods.

Stalybridge Street Feast

 

Stalybridge Street Feast first began in July, branded as “Foodie Friday”. However, for the event this month it was renamed the Stalybridge Street Feast to give the event a name solely associated with our historic town. As well as the name change, we listened closely to feedback from residents and traders to ensure the most enjoyable and safest experience for all involved. This included closing the main road earlier to allow for extra space for crowds and stalls as well as improving access for disabled people and pushchairs. The number of vendors was also increased, with extended bar facilities, seating areas and additional amenities such as bins and portaloos. The next Stalybridge Street Feast is scheduled for 10 September, and I have no doubt it will be just as warmly received as the previous occasions.

But these events, as exciting as they may be, are just the beginning of our ambitions to regenerate and adapt our town centres for the post-lockdown world. The Council’s Executive Cabinet has approved plans to use £200,000 of government funding to boost tourism, improve green spaces, provide more temporary outdoor seating areas and run trial events, markets and pop-up stalls across the borough. As long as we keep getting vaccinated and look after ourselves and those around us while we’re out and about, the next few months will be an exciting time for Tameside as we look to build back better, fairer and greener following the coronavirus pandemic.

 

Posted by: Executive Leader


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