Petition Launched As Consultation Starts Over The Future Of Leek Trestle Market

An online petition has been launched asking Staffordshire Moorlands District Council to reconsider plans to fit permanent stalls in Leek Trestle Market.

It comes at a time the Moorlands council has employed consultants to commence a consultation exercise on the proposed project.

The trestle market has been the focus of debate and controversy for several months as Leek Town Council had requested the building be made available for events.

However, the district council said new permanent stalls could be built which will not allow the premises to be used for any other events.

Now the chairman of Leek Town Council entertainment committee, Councilor Matt Swindlehurst, has started the petition to go to the chairman of the Moorlands council.

The petition, which has already been signed by more than 1,600 people, reads: “We ask you to reconsider the plans to fit permanent stalls into the present trestle market building.

“If this happens we lose the market itself, as well as a precious multi functional town center space, which has been used for over one hundred years for a wide range of social events.

“We call on you to work closely with all of Leek’s elected representatives in utilizing this historic building to the full, supporting the local economy as well as raising Leek’s profiles as a tourist destination.

In response, councillor Swindlehurst said: “The town council has now held a very interesting meeting with Quarterbridge, who have been appointed consultants to the consultation stage of the proposed changes to the trestle market building.

“Our concerns were clearly expressed, and the councillors who attended made clear their views on the idea of fixed stalls.

“The potential for continued multi functional use was explored at length, and we were able to call on our local knowledge and experience to fill in some gaps in their understanding, as well as put right some misleading information.”

Leek town mayor, Councilor Stephen Wales, added: “The initial consultation between Leek Town Council and Quarterbridge the Staffordshire Moorlands District Council appointed consultancy has considered many issues and allowed clarifications to be put forward.

“This building sits in a prime position surrounded by car parks and deserves to be used much more for the people and organizations in the town who need access to this historical venue.

“To see it locked up four days a week including every Sunday throughout the whole year is a wasted resource. We hope all these aspects are fully considered and we welcome the public’s contributions to the Trestle Market consultation in the New Year.”