Voted Britain’s Favourite Market in the NABMA Great British Market Awards 2019, Bury Market attracts visits from other market authorities hoping to follow its example, as well as shoppers who travel from across the UK. On its open market days (Wed/Fri/Sat), Bury Market boasts an impressive 300 stalls. The 58 units in the market hall, another seven in the dedicated fish & meat hall and the 28 shops on the perimeter also open on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. In the Market Hall and the Fish and Meat Hall occupancy is at 100%, whereas it is 96% in the Open Market. The traders attract approximately eight million visitors a year, driving footfall in the town and generating a surplus of £1.1m.
As for the stats, according to research commissioned by Bury Council in 2014, its customers are 70% female and mainly white British. 53% are over 65 and 75% of Bury Market’s loyal customer-base have been visiting for more than ten years. Whilst 36% of shoppers come from the local area, the research showed that 41% are drawn from elsewhere in Manchester and 5% come by coach.
The market is operated under Charter rights by Bury Markets Management team, within the Property and Asset Management, Communities and Well-being Directorate of Bury Council. The Management team works closely with the strong and long-running Bury Market Traders Association as well as local shopping centres, town centre board, BID, local college, charities, community groups, police and ASB teams.
As with traditional markets across the UK, footfall and vacancies are both on a downward trajectory and churn is a particular concern. The Council is working to attract more local people and younger customers and is beginning a four-year capital investment programme to address backlog maintenance and refurbishment. A town centre master-planning exercise is currently underway to deliver more housing and grow the night time economy; we look forward to finding out more about the relationship between these plans and the award-winning Bury Market.