Page last updated at 16:49 GMT, Thursday, 18 February 2010

Traders' anger over sale of Lancaster indoor market

Traders in Lancaster have said they face losing their businesses because of council plans to sell a city market.

The indoor market, which has 29 different stalls, may be closed down and sold to a single retailer.

Last year, the Common Garden Street shopping centre made a loss of nearly half a million pounds, a Lancaster City Council spokeswoman said.

Market stall holders want more than the basic compensation, but the local authority has refused to pay any extra.

Our livelihood is at stake
Dennis Bushinski, a butcher

There is a possibility that traders could receive relocation packages to nearby Charter Market or Festival Market, depending on space and opening times, the council said.

The indoor market, which was burnt to the ground in 1984, has had traders based there for decades.

Dennis Bushinsk, a butcher in the market, said he feels the council is at fault for deciding to rent instead of buy the building.

He said: "The people that first did this deal should be brought to book. They should come to this market and come tell us how us traders are going to cope for the rest of our lives. Our livelihood is at stake."

A council spokeswoman said the amount of money the market was losing made it unfeasible to continue.

The decision is subject to approval by full council at its final budget meeting on 3 March.



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