09 February 2021 Mendip Markets to extend operating hours thanks to public support

Mendip District Council is to extend outdoor market opening times and reinstate its Saturday offer in Frome and Wells, following positive footfall figures and feedback from customers.

From tomorrow Tuesday, 9th February, Mendip Markets will operate Monday to Friday, 9am-2pm in Glastonbury, Street, Shepton Mallet, Frome and Wells. And from this Saturday (13th February), there will be a markets in Wells and Frome, 9am-2pm. Stalls will sell essential provisions such as food, cleaning products and pet supplies. 

The move will boost businesses and the wider economy and will be welcomed by stallholders and local residents.

The Council’s Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhood Services, Cllr Josh Burr, said: “We’ve been talking to traders and residents throughout the pandemic, and sought guidance from the National Federation of Market Traders (NFMT). We thank everyone for their insights, understanding and encouragement.

“Despite COVID and calls on the Council for support with testing and vaccination programmes, we managed to keep the markets open Monday to Friday, in recent weeks, and offered free rents and free parking as incentives to support what we know to be a very valuable community resource.

“The reduction of Saturday slots in Wells and Frome was a temporary move, and we are delighted to see them quickly return once more.”

Cllr Burr added: “The continued success of the COVID vaccine roll-out has brought new confidence to our communities. People are clearly keen to get outdoors and support our much-loved markets across the district. We recognise that, and also the need to help our businesses and the local economy.

”The extended opening hours will begin across the district from tomorrow, with Saturday markets returning this weekend. Our experienced Markets Officers will be on-hand to ensure these events are legally compliant and safe, and to offer any reassurance that’s required.”

Cllr Burr concluded: “We wanted to bring the Saturday market back as quickly as possible. The offering may be lighter to allow traders to source stock, however we know they are chomping-at-the-bit to set up stall, and that our residents will return to them again, with great enthusiasm.”

Here are the opening times for Mendip Markets in full, from Tuesday 9th February, 2021

  • Tuesday: Glastonbury Market 9am-2pm
  • Wednesday: Frome Market and Wells Market 9am-2pm
  • Thursday: Street Market 9am-2pm
  • Friday: Shepton Mallet Market 9am-2pm
  • Saturday: Frome Market and Wells Market 9am-2pm

Mendip Market opening times will remain under monthly review, and should Mendip’s COVID response be called upon again by Government and the NHS, the Council will advise traders, city and town councils, and the public of any changes.

Can’t make the markets? If you are unable enjoy the outdoor offering, don’t worry - you can still support Mendip stallholders. Your District Council has created an online directory that showcases our many market traders. Visit: https://www.mendip.gov.uk/markets

To stay up to date with market news please follow @mendip_markets on Twitter and @mendip.markets on Instagram or visit our website www.mendip.gov.uk/markets

03 February 2021Somerset Waste Partnership - 6am start from Monday 1 February

All household kerbside collections - recycling, rubbish and garden waste - will begin at 6am, rather than the previous 7am, from Monday 1 February. The aim is to step up staff and customer safety while ensuring waste services are maintained despite the continued disruptive pressure of COVID-19 on Somerset's kerbside collections.

Somerset Waste Partnership (SWP) and its contractors take a precautionary approach to cut contact and risk. For example, crews work in tightly-controlled team bubbles; the whole bubble isolates if a member tests positive, is in contact with someone who tests positive, or is symptomatic. This means far higher staff absences than expected, plus unpredictable daily changes as teams isolate or return to work, and crews are reallocated to maintain services. In the first three weeks of January, COVID-19 contributed to nearly 800 lost staff days, compared to just 58 lost days during December.

A precautionary approach to using extra agency staff to cover shortfalls adds to the strain on crews, many of whom have worked long hours for many weeks.

Collections from 6am will further reduce contact between team bubbles through widely spaced set-offs and allow an early start on work that may take longer or be incomplete if staff are absent. SWP has appreciated how residents understood and supported early starts in the past, such as the 2019 heatwave, and to avoid specific traffic hold-ups. Initially for the month of February, householders will need to put all their recycling, rubbish and garden waste out by 6am, or do so the night before.

Crews will not immediately return for some missed collections. This will be avoided if possible, but staff absences will sometimes make it impractical to go back for missed recycling or garden waste the following day. Residents will then need to take containers in until their next collection. SWP will communicate with any affected areas via social media and local stakeholders. Rubbish collections will not be affected. Missed recycling will be prioritised for next time and extra recycling materials can be put out.

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