Rally call to revitalise ailing market

Dinnington Outdoor Market is appealing for new traders to join the market, pictured from left are Diana of DT's, Joanne Ingram and Stephen Borkowski (w130615-1b)
Dinnington Outdoor Market is appealing for new traders to join the market, pictured from left are Diana of DT's, Joanne Ingram and Stephen Borkowski (w130615-1b)

A last ditch attempt to boost Dinnington’s flagging Saturday market is aiming to attract more traders and customers.

The market, behind Laughton Road, is virtually deserted on a Saturday, in stark contrast to the bustling scene every Friday when shoppers flock in their hundreds.

Now stall prices have been slashed by more than half to entice people in.

“There’s nowt better than Dinnington Market on a Friday afternoon with a bit of sunshine, there’s a great atmosphere,” said Stephen Borkowski, market manager.

“It’s good for the town, it brings people in and many go to the shops at the same time.”

He said traders from all over the north come to Dinnington. And many have been coming for decades

“There’s a great buzz and a huge variety, from fresh fish, bread, fruit and veg, to crafts, pet food and clothes.”

But out of a potential 60 stands, Saturdays see only a handful occupied.

Fruit and veg, cakes and bread, and a British Heart Foundation charity stall are regular Saturday traders.

“Saturday should be a great day for a market, it should be thriving. But it’s really gone down over the last 10 years or so,” said Stephen, who has been involved in running the market for 16 years.

He blames the rise of out-of-town shopping centres and big supermarkets.

“It’s not just Dinnington that’s suffering. It’s a typical picture across the country.”

Stephen said it would be great to see new traders taking up stalls, perhaps offering something slightly different to the Friday market.

He said plants, greetings cards, sweets, ladies fashion and jewellery were always popular, and that electronic cigarettes was a burgeoning business.

A lick of colourful paint is currently being slapped on the market back wall and stall roofs as part of a project with Rotherham Council to spruce up the area.

Traders are being offered Saturday stands for a special rate of just £5, more than half the going rate of £11. Contact Stephen on 07599190496.