Welcome news could lead to markets
reopening next month

THE NMTF has welcomed the news that both indoor and outdoor retail markets in England could start to fully reopen as soon as next month.

In the Government’s  COVID-19 recovery strategy presented to Parliament by Prime Minister Boris Johnson there is hope that the industry can begin to return to normal from June 1.

The recovery roadmap clearly states that the tentative stage two of the process includes:

“Opening non-essential retail when and where it is safe to do so, and subject to those retailers being able to follow the new COVID-19 Secure guidelines.

“The intention is for this to happen in phases from 1 June; the Government will issue further guidance shortly on the approach that will be taken to phasing, including which businesses will be covered in each phase and the timeframes involved.”

NMTF CEO Joe Harrison said: “We know our representations to the Government have ensured that both the livelihoods of market traders and the future of the whole industry have been taken into account when looking at a phased exit from the lockdown.

“We are confident that in partnership with market management traders will make sure appropriate social distancing can take place.

“We are pleased about this latest development but will continue to monitor the situation closely.”

His comments come against a backdrop of the results of a NABMA (National Association of British Market Authorities) survey that suggested over 40 per cent of markets may never open again. It revealed that less than 30 per cent of markets were open.

“The NMTF feels that with the right support from organisations such as ours traders will be able not only to bounce back from these terrible times but also help to bring about a rejuvenation of our markets industry,” he added.

“Whatever happens over the next few weeks we must remain positive.”