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The researchers found that markets, worth an estimated £10.5 billion to Britain’s economy, are a significant employer of local people, encourage business start-ups, support farmers and strengthen a sense of social cohesion.
As well as offering higher levels of sociability than towns without them, the study suggests that markets promote food security and sustainability, and demonstrate the ‘market effect’ which increases footfall by between 15 and 27 per cent compared to towns without markets.
The report also discovered potential for markets to further develop an area’s vitality by helping ‘fixed’ forms of retailing adapt to the public’s changing expectations of towns and cities.
Professor Hallsworth, visiting research fellow at Portsmouth Business School said, “We can unequivocally say markets contribute to the economic, social and political health of towns and cities.
“Footfall is a key indicator of town and city centre performance, representing activity, usage and relevance. Towns and cities with markets are attractive and welcoming to all, not just those with money to spend. We argue that a busy town is a healthy town.”
This research was commissioned and published by The National Association of British Market Authorities.
How do local markets affect your business? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your story.
Image courtesy of Shepherds Markets.
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