DV8 CGI Southport Market
DV8 Designs was appointed to redesign the market

Sefton scoops £1m for Southport market

Dan Whelan

The planned transformation of the market has taken a step forward after the council bagged a seven-figure grant, enabling the project to complete this financial year subject to approval of a business case being submitted in September.

A total of £900,000 of the Government Acceleration Grant would be spent on the market and the remaining £100,000 would go towards lighting improvements on Lord Street, Southport’s main retail area. 

Last August, Warrington-based studio DV8 Designs was appointed to lead the redesign of the market. 

The vision for the redesign will draw on the successes of European food markets and incorporate a cultural model that encourages social eating and sharing, local partnership and collaboration, and supporting local producers and small businesses.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and skills, said the money would go towards achieving the council’s long-term vision for Southport.

“Southport Market is part of our Southport masterplan and we recognise how important such a social space would be to the local economic and tourism sector.

“It will bring a market culture experience to the town that some cities across the UK have successfully introduced already and which European towns and cities have become celebrated for.”

Mark Lawler, managing director of Baltic Creative and member of the Southport Town Deal Board, said:  “As a seaside town that is renowned for its great food and drink offer, we think that [the market] will be the perfect complement to Southport’s already impressive social offer, which is already recognised for championing independent businesses.” 

Sefton Council is also seeking a larger grant of £25m from the Government’s Town Deal Fund to progress a wider regeneration of Southport town centre.

The plans include includes a £70m theatre, a waterfront residential development at Marine Lake and the possibility of co-working space and apartments at the former Debenham’s, and a boutique hotel, cinema, dining and events space at the Beale’s store.

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The council need to sort out the empty shops on Lord Street it looks run down, There have been comments fron outsiders stating they wont visit again because Southport looks awful. Do the council want our town to be like Rhyl and Morecombe

By Linda Anderson

More cash for Sandgrinders. The only borough in Sefton that gets REAL street cleaners. With brush n shovels. Not the one man mobile dirt spreaders.

By Ben

I cannot see any business case succeeding for this ‘grant’ as the market is void of business and of footfall. It’s a circular problem. The rent amount should be zero for the first two years. Otherwise no business would try to open in a place where a tiny amount of the populace may occasionally pop in. The money will never arrive as that would take years to recoup.

By Dr M R Dowling

WHAT!!!! not yet ANOTHER Southport market scheme; how many schemes has it had in the last five years? Other than shrimps, I dont associate Southport with any ‘food and drink offer’, let alone for it to be renowned as such. There is a significant difference in the markets of France, Spain, Italy…..even Bury and Bolton…they are not tacky……like Southport is.

By Anonymous

Unfortunately the market is in the wrong place. Redevelop one of the old department stores as a market!

By Red Squirrel.

Dr Dowling has clearly not visited either Duke St Market or Baltic Market in Liverpool and seen the huge impact they have had on their surroundings – both considered ‘highly unpromising’ at the time of their opening. He might also benefit from a visit to Altrincham Market, too, to see what a well-conceived market in the middle of a town centre can achieve.

As for all the other doomsayers, you need to get out more.

Well done, Sefton Council: I have no doubt that this will prove the naysayers wrong and will give me cause to head up the coast for a visit once more.

By Sceptical

Sceptical…great name for someone who ‘supports’ the move; but I would ask you, have you been to Southport Market in the last 20 years? Red Squirrel is correct, its in the wrong place, its too small, it has no USP, there are better options, etc, etc, etc; Mr Dowling is correct, there isnt a business case . I am not saying Southport should not have a Market…but scheme after scheme has tried to save this Jonah…..so lets throw some more money at it.

By Anonymous