Midhurst market scrapped following complaints from retailers

Midhurst’s newest market will ‘not continue’ following complaints from business owners.

In its early days, the market in Market Square was hailed as ‘successful’ by organisers and stallholders alike, but following a small number of complaints to the company running the weekly event, it was decided that Saturday (August 7) would be the last.

A spokesperson for Midhurst Town Council said: “Midhurst Town Council greatly regret that Bray, the organisers of the weekly market, have discontinued it.

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“The council and the Midhurst Town Trust, who own and manage the Market Square, arranged the weekly market to increase footfall in the old part of the town and to attract more visitors.

The first Midhurst market

“Judging by the results of two surveys conducted after a six-week trial, the market appeared to be on the way to success as both overwhelmingly supported the market.

“Most respondents said the market had not changed their shopping habits in the shops in Midhurst, while others said they had come to Midhurst for the market and as a result had visited shops in Midhurst.

"However, a small number of shopkeepers complained to Bray that the market sold the same goods as themselves and asked them to stop. Bray tried to find stallholders who could comply with their request, but it proved impossible; so in the final week of the market on August 7 very few stalls appeared.

"Bray has written to the council to say that it would not be possible to continue the market without them having the right to choose.”

One business owner unhappy with the market was Stéphane Jacob, who owns the Midhurst Bakery in North Street.

He said: “On the first market there was a huge stall selling bread, cheese and salami and that’s what I sell. It’s a bit silly. In July since the market started, compared to last year, I lost £1,250 in one month.

"If I have to lose over £1,000 every month it is not good.”