Sadly today is the last trading day for Levenshulme Market in 2023. The Market is taking a break after celebrating 10 years of trading and intends to return in 2024.
The Market has been clear that there are a variety of reasons for this unexpected pause but the main one appears to be Manchester City Council deciding to impose a new fee in addition to the site licence fee the Market already pays. A full explanation from Levenshulme Market is available HERE (June 7) with a further update HERE (July 13).
Levenshulme Community Association would like to thank everyone involved in Levenshulme Market and for making the Market such a big part of Levenshulme as well as such a success winning several awards and supporting traders, with several going on to open businesses in Levenshulme. We hope that Levenshulme Market and Manchester City Council can find a solution and that the Council fully recognises the value of the Market and the contribution it has made to Levenshulme as a Community Interest Company and social enterprise, and the value it adds to our community.
Even though the weather might be showery today go down and give Levenshulme Market a big send off at the last Market of this year. We hope to see Levenshulme Market back again as soon as possible.
Levenshulme Market organisers have announced the Market will close in July for the rest of the year as they face a series of challenges. The last Market this year will now be on 15 July then the Market will close until 2024.
This is dreadful news for Levenshulme as the Market, run as a social enterprise, has been developed through the hard work and commitment of people in Levenshulme over the last 10 years. In 2020 the Market won Best Small Outdoor Market at the Great British Market Awards 2020 organised by the National Association of British Market Authorities and was a finalist in the BBC Food and Farming Awards 2019.
The Market says increased costs, staffing challenges, and the cost of living crisis have all played their part as well as the impact of the pandemic. Special mention is made of Manchester City Council, though, as it seeks to increase the fees charged to the Market to operate. This comes after a “painful planning permission process” to renew the permission with the Council. The Market also states “We reached out on a number of occasions to our local Levenshulme Councillors for assistance to no avail”.
Levenshulme Community Association has contacted Levenshulme Market to show our support and ask how we can help Levenshulme Market.
That’s right! With support from Arts Council England we’re proud announce Levenshulme Market is funding two local artists to work in the heart of Levenshulme’s local high street, creating an artistic project which connects with the community.
As regular customers know, each week Manchester’s artists can be found at the market, selling their incredible work directly to the warm and welcoming people of Levenshulme.
Now two of those artists, both of whom are Levenshulme locals, have been appointed as the market’s artists-in-residence.
This spring their joint project A Portrait of Levenshulme will see Laura Deane and Ciara Leeming popping up at a market stall offering FREE photographic portraits and drawing and collage workshops, and inviting participants to reflect on what makes this neighbourhood special.
This initiative has been made possible by Arts Council England’s Let’s Create Jubilee Fund to mark the Queen’s 70 year reign. Similarly, this project aims to celebrate the resilience, longevity and diversity in Levenshulme.
You’ll find Laura and Ciara at the market 11am-3pm this Saturday (23 April) at Levenshulme train station car park.
Levenshulme’s Cibus restaurant, run as a pop-up at Fred’s Ale House, is moving into new premises in what is currently the M19 Bar. People will also know Cibus from their stall on Levenshulme Market. Cibus Ristorante is scheduled to open on 14 October.
Cibus founder Giorgio Fontana has been working with Head Chef Marco Bracchitta to expand their menu and bring a complete Italian dining experience to their new restaurant. M19 is undergoing a full refit and will include refreshed, relaxed outside space at the rear with a “Balearic seaside shack” vibe.
Click HERE to read a report from Manchester Confidential including discussion of the history and development of Cibus and their approach to ingredients, wine and drink and their progress to their new restaurant in Levenshulme.
Levenshulme Market has secured its future for the next four years following approval of their planning application.
Planning permission has been granted for the the Market to operate for another four years. Although the market had originally hoped to extend its operation throughout the year and add Sunday markets and more Friday night markets to what it does the application has ended up with arrangements pretty much the same as are currently in place.
There is a blog post on the Levenshulme Market website by Richard Hirst, Market Manager, outlining their experience in securing the renewed operating permission. The post outlines with some frustration the bureaucracy involved, delays, and lack of support from both Manchester City Council and local councillors.
Although this experience does not appear to have been particularly positive for Levenshulme Market the main positive is that the future of the market has been secured at the heart of Levenshulme for several years to come.
“Levenshulme Market is here for another four years. Which is great news and an enormous relief. But the lesson for us is that, while Levenshulme Market may be thriving – with thousands of customers each week, awards under its belt, generating enormous high street footfall, organising financial projects to support our local area – there’s no assurance it won’t find its future at risk once again. We dearly hope we won’t have a repeat of this ordeal in future, but in four years’ time you could once again be called on to help- keep Levenshulme Market open.”
Levenshulme Market blog post, 12 july 2021
You can also read a report of Levenshulme Market’s success in securing its future in the MEN HERE
Levenshulme Market runs from March to December. Current dates are available HERE
Unfortunately it appears this report was a little premature. The information is contained in a report to the council’s planning committee and was not the actual decision of the planning committee. Apologies for this mistake. It turns out what was reported was a planning officer’s report with a recommendation to approve the planning application. The decision was due yesterday (18/02/21) but has now been deferred to a future date to allow additional information to be submitted. We hope whatever clarifications required are secured. The current arrangements remain in place until August 2021.
(Post edited to reflect the current situation pending a final decision by the council planning committee.)
The popular and successful Levenshulme Market operating as a Community Interest Company is here to stay [has submitted an application to continue] for another four years.
Manchester City Council approved [considered] the planning application today (18 February 2021) for an operating licence for Levenshulme Market for another four years. Not just as it is, though, as the market has big ambitions and will be operating throughout the year. These operating times were approved:
Fridays (up to 12 weeks a year) 16.00-22.00
Saturdays (52 weeks a year) 10.00-16.00
Sundays (up to 12 weeks a year) 10.00-17.00
The previous operating times for the market were:
Saturdays (March to December), 10.00-16.00
Fridays (ups to 10 days per year), 17.00-21.00
The market will [has applied to] continue to operate over the same area it currently uses across the southern half of the Levenshulme Station car park taking up approximately 50% of available parking spaces and providing 50 market stalls. The provision for 10 market stalls previously permitted on Levenshulme Village Green has been [would be] removed [under the new arrangements].
There are also plans to install a mains electricity supply for use by the market that will enable the current use of a generator to be phased out.
The decision [recommendation] includes this assessment:
“The operation market would give the district a distinctive retail offer that would contribute to the continued regeneration of the district centre, which would be particularly important to local economic recovery in the post-COVID period. The market is operated as a local social enterprise and many of its traders are from the surrounding area thereby demonstrating its links with the local area. It would also provide an important outlet for the sustained operation of local businesses. The development would present continued opportunities for social interaction and engagement across a diverse community.”
A new site management plan is to be agreed formalising the existing arrangements that also includes provision of stewards to direct vehicles and pedestrians, new signs and arranging remote parking for traders who do not require access to their vehicles so that the remaining parking spaces are fully accessible to the public when the market is operating.