Tommyfield Market traders are set to see their rent reduced by 50% to support them ahead of the market’s relocation to the new-look Spindles development.
Oldham Council's plans have been developed in direct response to market traders' requests for additional financial support, particularly in light of the Cost of Living crisis and the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The proposals are set to be signed off by the Council's Cabinet committee tomorrow.
Cllr Amanada Chadderton, Leader of Oldham Council said: “Times are hard for us all right now, but our market traders have had it particularly tough over the past couple of years.
“The pandemic had a huge impact on their small businesses, and we are now facing a devastating Cost of Living crisis which is resulting in increased costs, lower footfall and customers having less money to spend.
“We know this is a worrying issue for businesses across the borough, however Tommyfield traders are also in the unique position that their place of business – the market hall – requires significant investment.
“It does not make sense to plough money into the building when it will soon be demolished following the market’s relocation to its new home in the redeveloped Spindles Town Square.
“Instead, we feel it is better to support traders with this significant rent reduction, putting money back in their pockets now. We hope this will help them get through the difficult months ahead and support them to move to the new market site when work completes.
“Our market traders are an asset to Oldham town centre and we are working hard to give them a brighter future.”
All indoor, brick and shop unit tenants currently receive at least a 10% rent reduction. The additional increase in support is set to be formally approved at the Cabinet meeting tomorrow (Wednesday 21 September).
The rent cut will be offered alongside new tenancy agreements to help traders plan for Tommyfield’s relocation and the closure of the current market hall.
The application process for the new market site was also discussed, with applications being invited in the new year. A free support package from the Business Growth Hub will be offered to all tenants to complete their applications, should they require it.
Cllr Shoab Akhtar, Cabinet Member for Employment and Enterprise, said: “We are encouraging everyone to apply to move into the new market - but appreciate not everyone may want to.
“Regardless of what traders choose to do, the updated tenancy agreement and 50% rent reduction will be offered to tenants to help them plan for their future. We hope this news will give them some vital financial help and clarity for their own business planning.
“Tommyfield has some brilliant businesses who offer fantastic products and services at great prices, so please shop local as much as you can.”
The discounted rent is part of an ongoing package of support introduced by Oldham Council to help Tommyfield traders.
In March we introduced a free after 3pm weekdays offer on the market car park so people can pull up and pop in during the afternoon. Free parking is also available all day at weekends. Marketing activity including radio, social media and vehicle is advertising also in place.
Tommyfield Market boasts more than 100 businesses selling everything from everyday essentials, takeaway food from across the world, fresh produce and services including hairdressing, beauty, key cutting, shoe and clothes repairs. It’s open Monday-Saturday 9am-5.15pm.