Rochdale’s brand new indoor market opened its doors to the public this morning.
The Rochdale Market Foodhall and Café is now operating from the former Santander building on The Butts, following a £750,000 transformation spearheaded by the council and Rochale Development Agency (RDA).
Stephen Bamford, who currently owns and manages Cryer’s butchers in Littleborough, has opened his latest venture, Rochdale’s Choice Family Butchers, within the market and is raring to go.
He said: “It’s going really well in Littleborough, but I’m really looking forward to being in the town centre, in a really high footfall area. The indoor market looks great and being close to a greengrocer’s and bakery is ideal, as it’s your classic market offer.
“Traditional butchers like ours are becoming very popular now because people know that if they buy from us, all their meat is locally-sourced and good quality. I can’t wait to get started.”
Popular baker, the Laughing Loaf, which currently has a shop in The Walk, has also been successful in securing a place in the indoor market as the base for their second opening in the town centre.
Owners Rachel Goodyer and Patrick Jarrett have opened Patrick’s Bread, which will sell bread and cakes, to complement their existing store, which is increasingly focussing on hot food.
Greengrocer Geoff Taylor, who has run a fruit and vegetables stall on the market for 40 years, has expanded into the indoor market and will operate that alongside his existing business on the outdoor market.
And the owners of brand new café, Montague’s, are hoping to bring a taste of the Northern Quarter to their unit on the first floor with breakfast offerings like waffles with maple syrup and fruit compote and avocado on toast, as well as homemade cakes, freshly made sandwiches, soup and speciality pastries.
Owners Debra McGinty and Anna Barber will be sourcing their ingredients from other stalls within the market to celebrate the borough’s cooperative tradition.
Debra, from Heywood, said: “I’ve always really believed in Rochdale town centre and our new unit is beautiful, particularly with its panoramic views over the River Roch and Rochdale Town Hall.
“The area around the newly re-opened river is really blossoming and turning into a mini Northern Quarter, with new bars and restaurants, like the Medicine Tap and the Wellington. I think our offer here will really add to this mix.”
The indoor market will operate alongside the outdoor market next to the re-opened river.
The indoor market will be open Monday to Saturday, from 9am and 5pm, while the outdoor market is open on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 9am and 5pm.
The opening comes just weeks after the council took over the running of the market, following a decision not to renew the licence granted to market operators Market Asset Management.
The council originally took over management of the market in 2013 to save it from closure when the exchange shopping centre was sold to new owners.
Councillor Allen Brett, leader of Rochdale Borough Council, said: “A high-quality market is a crucial part of any successful town centre and I know our new market will play a major role in our redeveloped town centre, which is in the middle of a £400m transformation programme.
“I’m proud to welcome such high-quality businesses into our brand new indoor market and am particularly pleased to hear that they are all existing Rochdale businesses, which are expanding and in many cases, creating new jobs.
The council is looking to build on the offer on the outdoor market and is keen to hear from anybody who is interested in trading at the site.
Anyone who would like to know more can contact market manager David Bellis on 07498655034.