Fewer days, reduced opening times and more rent concessions for traders - further attempts to boost the New Watford Market will launch later this month.

The £2 million market, which moved to the town centre in October, has seen a slump in trade and footfall during its 'bedding period'.

For the last three months traders have enjoyed a 50 per cent concession in their rents to reflect the difficulties they have faced since the relocation.

But four traders have left since the New Watford Market opened.

It is hoped a new operating structure, which includes reducing the number of days its open from six to four and a continued 25 per cent discount on stall holders' rent, will breathe new life into the venture.

On a six month trial basis, the indoor market will open on Tuesday, Friday and the weekend, with opening times 9am to 6pm on Saturday and the weekdays and 11am to 5pm on Sunday.

In addition the traders' rents will be adjusted to take into account the reduction of days and an additional 25 per cent concession will be given for the two months.

The stalls in The Parade will keep operating from Tuesday to Saturday, and will include day stalls placed in the market.

Themed street markets are also planned for Sundays in a bid to link up the containers market with the high street.

A joint statement from TCM director Andrew Sparrow, which manages the market, and trader representative Grant Adams, who runs The Footie Store, said the new operating structure would start on Tuesday, April 14.

It said: "Representatives of the market traders met with TCM and the council yesterday evening.

"The consensus of the meeting was that the proposal was ‘in principal’ acceptable, with the majority of traders willing to accept the revised timings, including Sunday opening."

However, discussions will continue with the upstairs food court traders, who it is believed may wish to continue to open five days, and with six traders who have concerns about Sunday trading.

Mr Adams said the traders were optimistic the proposed changes would be the turning point for the market.

He said what's needed is for people in Watford to get behind the market, and he added seven new traders were due to open in the next couple of months.

Elected Mayor of Watford Dorothy Thornhill said traders were queuing up to join New Watford Market and she is confident TCM will find the right mix of stalls to work in Watford.

She said: "TCM is responsible for the market, I am confident they will find the right mix of stalls that works for Watford.

"But everyone needs to get behind the new plan and make it work.

"Traders need to decide if they have a future in this market or not, and make the best of it.

"We have bent over backwards to be helpful. This is a fair compromise, now we all need to focus on sending out a positive message about our market."