Agenda and minutes

Market Sub Committee - Thursday, 25th February, 2021 10.30 am

Venue: This will be a remote meeting held via Microsoft Teams in accordance with The Local Authorities and Crime Panels (Coronavirus)(Flexibility of Meetings)(England and Wales) Regulations 2020

Contact: Committee Officer  01525 631920 & Email:

Note: or by tel: +44 20 3795 5672 (Conf ID: 748 449 855#) 

No. Item



Schedule 12 of the Local Government Act 1972 requires a record be kept of the Members present and that this record form part of the minutes of the meeting. Members who cannot attend a meeting should tender apologies to the Town Clerk.


Apologies for absence had been received from Mark Saccoccio, Town Clerk.



(i)    Under the Localism Act 2011 (sections 26-37 and Schedule 4) and in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct, Members are required to declare any interests which are not currently entered in the Member’s Register of Interests or if he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it.


(ii)   Should any Member have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in an item on the agenda, the Member may not participate in consideration of that item unless a Dispensation has first been requested (in writing) and granted by the Council (see Dispensation Procedure).


No pecuniary interests were declared and no dispensations were requested.


Councillor Harvey declared a personal interest as a member of South Bedfordshire Friends of the Earth.



QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC (3 minutes per person; maximum 15 minutes)

To receive questions and statements from members of the public in respect of any item of business included in the agenda, as provided for in Standing Order No.s 3(f) and 3(g).


A question was raised by a member of the public for clarification on whether he was attending the meeting as the official trader representative for the Market.  It was confirmed that following the departure of a trader representative attending meetings, Committee resolved to work with the National Market Traders Federation (NMTF)  to recruit a Market trader representative for future attendance at meetings. It was acknowledged that the member of the public remained Chair of his Trader Group and was encouraged to liaise with the NMTF directly in order to become the new NMTF accepted Committee representative.


Committee permitted the member of public to engage in discussion during the meeting.





(a)      The Sub-Committee received the draft minutes of the previous meeting, held on 5 November 2020 for consideration.


Minute reference 42/MK Market General Update – in paragraph 6 it should read adverse weather policy not inclement weather policy.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the Markets Sub-Committee meeting held on 5 November 2020 be approved as a correct record, to be signed at a later date when safe to do so.


(b)   No updates from the minutes of the previous meeting.




(a)   To receive a general update on market activity and to consider the recommendations contained therein (attached).

(b)   To receive a verbal presentation on recommendations as set out below from the Grounds and Environmental Services Committee, Ref: 97/GE, in relation to the Council’s waste management contract:


RECOMMENDED to the Cultural and Economic Services Committee:


(i)     to receive specific information on waste collected from the market and to look at ways in which to promote these figures.

(ii)   to look at ways to maximise the opportunities for the market to embed and promote recycling at the market.


Additional documents:


(a)      The Sub-Committee received and considered an update report on market activity including market delivery from October to December 2020, trader recruitment, social media platforms, promotion and future visiting markets.


The market continued to follow the COVID 2 metre distancing rules. Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) had installed barriers to both ends of the High Street. Market staff ensured they remain closed, to keep the High Street car-free on market days and enable traders to access their market pitches. On a few occasions, cars had accessed the High Street when the barriers were left open and this was regularly followed up by market staff. The problem had been passed to CBC’s parking enforcement team requesting they carry out early morning visits to try to reinforce the restrictions.


A question was raised regarding the temporary pedestrianisation of the High Street and if officers would be submitting their opinions to Central Bedfordshire Council.  Members agreed this should come from Council (to be discussed at the April meeting), taking all Committee views into account.


(b)      A verbal update was received from the Head of Grounds and Environmental Services on the Council’s new waste management contract and its performance in relation to market rubbish collection.  Members were informed that the amount of waste going to landfill was now zero, with 9 tons of waste being recycled.  These figures were an improvement on previous years but there were further improvements which could be made.


A question was raised regarding the crisp packet recycling box and whether it was available weekly at the market.  It was confirmed the box was now full but members of the public could hand their crisp packets to LLTC staff at the market to store until a new box was sourced.  A suggestion was made to provide a weather-proof bin for crisp bag collection which would be available regularly on market days.   There was uncertainty whether the waste contractor, Veolia, would be continuing the recycling box service.  The Head of Grounds and Environmental Services agreed to speak directly to Veolia and update the Committee by email.


RESOLVED to note the report.





To receive and consider a Motion proposed by Councillor V Harvey in respect of winter gritting (attached).



The Sub-Committee received a motion from Councillor Harvey regarding the gritting of the High Street, both roads and pavements in relation to market day and everyday activity in the town centre.  The motion was not proposed by a Committee member and after discussions members agreed the present Gritting policy should be reviewed through the Policy and Finance Committee.


RECOMMENDED to Policy & Finance to instigate a review of the current Gritting Policy.





The Sub-Committee received and considered the budget report. The figures this year could not be compared with previous years and does not represent part of a typical year because of the impact of COVID-19 on predicted income.  Pitch fees continue to be waived for permanent traders for the remainder of this financial year.


RESOLVED to note the report.




To receive a report on the market rents and to consider the recommendations contained therein (attached).



The Sub-Committee received an updated report on Market Rents following the changes proposed at the Policy & Finance Meeting on 22 February 2021.  It was agreed at that meeting to waive payment of Market rents for those permanent traders who were classified as essential traders (therefore allowed to trade currently) until the first Tuesday Market after the date that the Government allow non-essential traders to resume trading.  It had also been agreed to waive payments of Market rents for those permanent traders who are classified as non-essential traders (therefore not able to trade currently) for a period expiring 12 weeks after the first Tuesday market after the date the Government allow non-essential traders to resume trading. 


Concerns were raised that the return to full rents would not give time for the Market to recover and footfall increase.  Also it was confirmed that all market traders were kept informed of up-and-coming meetings and decisions via Newsletters and the Market Manager was in constant communication with them each week. 


The Market Sub Committee was asked to consider whether casual traders who had supported the market during the lockdown period could be given priority for casual pitches when appropriate to do so. 


Thanks were given to the Council for the help given  to market traders over the past months and any concerns or problems should be directed to officers for clarification.


RESOLVED that those casual traders who had supported the market during the lockdown period, and paid, rent, be given priority for casual pitches for six months after the date that the Government allow non-essential traders to resume trading.