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Plans agreed for new Watford Market to be moved from Charter Place to TJ Hughes car park
Proposals to move Watford Market to a new covered site in the town centre have been agreed.
Council planners signed-off plans on Friday to move the market to the car park of the TJ Hughes building off High Street.
As the application received fewer than five objections it did not need to go to a vote of the council's development control committee.
The market is set to move from its current location in Charter Place next summer as the aging shopping centre is due to be knocked down and redeveloped by the operators of intu Watford.
Watford Borough Council, which has undertaken the £2 million project to move the market, said the new version will be fully covered with a canopy roof and have new lighting signs to lift its profile in the town centre.
The new market will have space for around 40 permanent stalls.
The ground floor will include stalls selling fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and fish, with the upper floor providing a food court selling hot food and drink.
Elected mayor of Watford Dorothy Thornhill said: "I believe Watford should have a market that we can all be proud of. We have gone for the best option possible - a two storey market, with stalls spilling out onto The Parade, and open five days a week.
She added: "We have selected Town & Country Markets to manage the market for us. The company has a strong track record, operating 16 markets across the country. They have led major redevelopments including Old Spitalfields market, which they also operate, and are working with Shepherds Bush market."
Following the announcement, Grant Adams, Chairman of Market Traders Association at Watford Market, said: "The traders have been working closely with the council to create a new modern market place which will hopefully appeal to a wider audience than the current market hall. The market has evolved many times in the past and I have every faith this latest incarnation will be no different."
Watford Borough Council is leasing the site from Legal & General Property, who have also secured leases that see the return of Clements and the opening of B&M Bargains at the former TJ Hughes site.
Mayor Thornhill added: "Together with the new market, these openings will create real vibrancy in this part of the town centre and will attract more shoppers and visitors which will be a boost to the surrounding shops and restaurants. This is another piece of great news for our town centre and I can’t wait to see it all finished next year."
The current market will continue trading in Charter Place until the opening of its new home next summer.
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