Some stall holders at Accrington Market have announced their closure, as traders express concerns about the upcoming Market Hall refurbishment.

Earlier this year, plans for an £11 million redevelopment were announced and the town’s grade II listed Victorian Market Hall is set to benefit from this.

The plans involve moving stall holders outside to Accrington Town Square Market, until March 2025 when the renovation is set to be complete.

Now, questions have been raised about the transformational works with some worried about the future of their business.

Several traders have released statements announcing their closure or decision to “scale back their business”. The council has been criticised for its "poor communication" with traders regarding plans for the refurbishment.

The council said it is “looking forward to launching the new market location” and wished the closing stalls “all the best for the future”.

Greg’s Bacon and Cooked Meats Stall is set to close on November 25. It did not link its closure directly to the regeneration plans in its Facebook statement.

In a statement a spokesperson said: “It is with great sadness that we have to inform you all of our recent news.

“Our stall will be closing down on November 25, 2023.

“We’d like to thank all of our customers who have shopped with us over the many years, it has been a pleasure serving you all and you will all be greatly missed.

“Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts.”

Slacks Farm Butchers and Slacks Farm Deli’s last day of trading will be December 30.

Lancashire Telegraph: Slacks Farm Butchers workers at Accrington Market in 2021Slacks Farm Butchers workers at Accrington Market in 2021 (Image: Slacks Farm Butchers)

After 30 years of trading, a spokesperson confirmed it is closing “due to the forthcoming closure of the indoor market”.

A spokesperson said: “Dear valued customers and friends of Slacks Farm Butchers and Slacks Farm Deli in Accrington Market Hall.

“We are very sad to inform you that our last trading day in Accrington Market Hall will be Saturday, December 30, due to the forthcoming closure of the indoor market hall for redevelopment.

“As a family, Steve, Claire, Beth and Mark would like to sincerely thank you for all your fantastic, loyal support and friendship over the last 30 plus years.

“It has been an absolute pleasure serving the Hyndburn community and we hope to carry on doing so via our Chorley shop and online delivery service. We will be posting details of these options in the coming weeks.

“We hope to see you all over the festive period as it is business as usual until December 30."

Damien Smith, who runs Smith’s Fresh Produce stall, wants to squash rumours that the stall is closing, but he has criticised the council for the initial lack of clarity surrounding the plans.

Damien, whose fruit and vegetable stall has been at the outdoor section of the market for 56 years, said he is “not 100 per cent sure” about the stall’s future once the Market Hall renovations are complete in 2025. He is concerned that he may have to reapply to guarantee a space.

He said: “We are definitely not closing.

“Weeks ago none of us knew anything. Now, we have seen the outdoor units we are set to have and know more about what we are getting.

“The only thing I have been concerned about is the lack of information we have been told by the council.

“This all happened very quickly and weeks ago we were told we were moving but had no idea what we were moving into.

“I am feeling a lot more confident now than I was yesterday.”

The council confirmed that it has received questions from the community about the transformational works planned for Accrington Town Square. 

A spokesperson said the “majority of traders” have supported the council’s decision to create a temporary location for the market.

A spokesperson said: “In early 2024 construction works are due to start on the major levelling up projects, including Accrington Market. 

"Since funding was awarded, plans have moved at pace and businesses operating inside the market have adapted and worked closely with the project teams to decide future plans for their businesses.

“The Market Hall project team are based within Accrington Market and available to talk to traders in person or via a dedicated email address, at a time convenient for them. 

“Some Market Hall businesses have made the decision and been supported to find new premises in Accrington town centre, such as on Warner Street, in the Victorian Arcade, or on Broadway.

“The majority of traders have made the decision to join us in creating a brand-new temporary location for the Accrington Market community.

“Traders taking up this opportunity will be provided with high-end bespoke made cabins that will be located on the Town Square. These cabins are highly secure, tailored to the business’ unique requirements and will also offer traders more flexibility with opening times.”

Some of the traders who support the decision for a temporary market include Hairdresser La Vita Belle Unisex Hairdressers.

A spokesperson said: “I am really looking forward to the next part of the market transformation. For so long I have hairdressing clients that have wanted more flexibility with appointment days and times.

“Having my own unit on the town square means I can offer that flexibility and possible extended service. It will help me expand my business and hopefully means I will have capacity to take on new customers too! It’s been great to get involved in designing my cabin and I can’t wait to see it in person.”

Bluddy Ell Tattoo Studio, Illusion ladies wear and Medina Mobile + Vape, have also expressed support.

A spokesperson for the council said: “We are looking forward to launching this new market location in the new year and sharing a new planned events programme for Accrington. We know the local community, who also highly value our independent businesses, will come to shop support them all.

“There have been a number of market traders who have recently made the decision to retire or scale back their business during this process, we have supported them during this and Hyndburn Council wish them all the best for the future.”

A spokesperson for Hyndburn Conservatives said: "Hyndburn councillors Councillor Zak Khan and Cllr Steven Smithson⁩ went to Accrington Market Hall to speak with traders concerned about the market hall refurbishment.

"Both recognise that there has been poor communication with traders regarding plans for the refurbishment as well as interim arrangements, and will act on the concerns raised with them today.

"The positive vision and plan for the future of our town will only come to fruition if we take people with us. It is a message we have heard loud and clear."