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Local architects Maber appointed

Published Monday, 20th February 2017

Melton Borough Council and Melton Mowbray Market appoint local architects Maber to develop concept plans for a food, drink and rural economy hub.

Melton Borough Council and Melton Mowbray Market, have teamed up to appoint Maber Architects to develop plans for a Phase 2 development of the market site.

The proposed scheme is a joint venture between the Council and the private sector. It will redesign and improve the southern section of the market, to better showcase Leicestershire's finest independently produced food and drink to a growing number of regional and national visitors. Through creating a hub, it will also provide a renewed focus for innovation and knowledge sharing for regional food and drink producers and sellers.  Skills and ambitions which will enable them to take their products and successes nationally and internationally.

As well as operating the largest town centre livestock market in the country, drawing in over 350,000 visitors a year, the renowned Melton Mowbray Market already hosts a successful twice weekly farmers market and has the area’s largest events venue as well as an award-winning café and bar.  Amongst other events, the site also hosts the Artisan Cheese Fair, Pie Fest, Choc Fest, Melton Mowbray Food Festival and the Annual Native and Traditional Breeds Show & Sale. Each of these bring thousands of visitors to the market and the area. The scheme will build and extend the town’s premium brand status, currently centred on pork pies and cheese, to enable the broader Rural Capital of Food vision to be realised. It will create a unique farm to fork, and, in the future, grain to glass experience that supports the Leicestershire Local Economic Partnership (LLEP) Sector Growth Plans for the food and drink sector and the tourism and hospitality sectors.

 Committee Chairman ,Cllr Joe Orson commented:

 “The market operators approached the Council with some exciting and ambitious plans for further developing Melton Mowbray Market.  Maber Architects have now been instructed to help create a Vision for a Phase 2 development. I see this as a positive next step forward to help the Market realise its full potential. At this stage the focus is on both parties exploring the options and feasibility of a food and drinks rural hub.  While there is not yet a commitment from either party beyond this, if proposals are successful and can materialise I can see this having the potential to be a major draw to Melton Mowbray.”

The project builds upon Phase 1, the redevelopment of the market’s cattle sheds and auction facilities, which safeguards the future of the Melton Mowbray as a key focus for the rural economy and the food and drink sector at a national level. The reconfiguration of the Market site enabled through the Phase 1 scheme (which is nearing practical completion on time and to budget) has created the opportunity for the Hub and the ability to better link the livestock section of the market to the general market section and to bring together the rural and urban communities in our region.

An expression of interest for Grant Funding to support a second Phase development has been made to the LLEP together with an application for revenue funding to develop the business case..

Investment will enable the reconfiguration of premises to deliver:

  • a showcasing facility and tasting experience to present goods from across the market and the region in one  location;
  • enhanced events facilities supporting a larger number of large and small events;
  • an independent brewery, which will distribute nationally, focus on local supply chains and support the local visit economy through operating a first rate and highly visible brewery, open to all and keen to share its knowledge and great products;
  • enhanced market accommodation, for additional complementary tenants

Combie Cryan, Director of Gillstream Markets Ltd, the market operator, commented:

“We became involved in Melton Mowbray Market because we are as passionate about great local food and drink as we are about markets.  We immediately saw the linkages between people coming to sell their animals and buy out of the farmers and antiques markets, as well as butchers coming to buy animals and retail them on site.  We would like to build on these linkages and provenance stories to play our role in the continued growth of the Market and the ‘Rural Capital of Food & Drink’ on a 7 day a week basis. 

Tim Boxford the lead consultant from Maber architects said:

“ We are thrilled to be working with MBC and Melton Mowbray Market. They have some really exciting ideas about how to enhance the market, attract new visitors and bolster Melton Mowbray’s reputation as a national centre for food. We have just started the process of pulling together everyone’s aspirations to create what we hope will be a clear and bold vision for the project. We are aiming to have some initial design concepts by the end of April.'

The proposed Phase 2 project has an added benefit of rationalizing the site and releasing the overflow car park site adjacent to The Crescent for residential development (subject to obtaining the necessary planning permissions) with the potential of at least 18 new residential units.

~ends~

For more information please contact:

David Blanchard

Corporate Property Officer

Melton Borough Council 

Tel:07894 632520

dblanchard@melton.gov.uk