Opinion: Attracting more regular, local stalls to the
Saturday and Thursday Ross Markets should become a high
priority item on the agenda of things to do to help Ross-on-Wye.
Markets attract large amounts of people, who also use local
shops, cafés (of which Ross has an abundance) and
to the visit by the French Market, somebody who did not
know that I am involved with 'Wyenot' but whom, it turned
out, had booked a room locally having found it on this web
site and seen the photos of Ross Markets taken on rare busy
days, asked me on Sunday. 'What day is market day?' I told
him that market days were Thursdays and Saturdays. 'That's
good,' he replied, in a Northern accent. 'I'm a market man
and there's nothing I love more than a good market'.
made me feel somewhat embarrassed. I could imagine the disappointment
he was going to feel when arriving at the regular market
in 'Ross-on-Wye: Market Town and Gateway to the Wye Valley',
finding only the usual three or four stalls, two of them
selling plants (albeit good plants). 'It's only a small
market,' I explained. To which he replied, 'Oh! In that
case I'll go to either Hereford or Ledbury instead. I love
a good market'.
tried market trading myself, during the early days of 'Wyenot',
I know that what puts the traders off coming to Ross is
the large ground rent charged by Herefordshire Council,
for doing nothing other than allowing a trader to set up
a stall, on a piece of land which otherwise (and most of
the time) earns nothing. When we tried trading, we more
often than not did not take enough money to cover our ground
rent and as a result, we gave up.
reducing the ground rent charged, would attract more traders,
which, if enough began trading, would increase the popularity
of Ross-on-Wye, 'Market Town' and attract the visitors that
Ross relies upon. Just a thought. I'll leave somebody else
in a Government paid job to come up with the idea.