City market is an ‘asset of community value’

The centre:mk, Midsummer Place and the Secklow Bridge Market.
The centre:mk, Midsummer Place and the Secklow Bridge Market.

Milton Keynes Council has taken up an option to buy the market should it ever come up for sale.

On Tuesday night, councillors met as part of the Delegated Decisions group, to agree making the market an ‘asset of community value.’

The moniker means the council has the right to bid to buy the market, should it become available to buy.

It doesn’t offer the council first refusal, nor does it guarantee the authority will take over ownership or force the owners in selling it.

Councillor Keith McLean, Cabinet member for Corporate Services, said: “The market still evokes huge emotions from the public, so to put this through with little objection is a step forward for us.

“People want to see the market continue in its current location – you only have to look at the packed public galleries whenever it comes up in meetings to see that people believe passionately about it.”

The nomination was put forward by Central Milton Keynes Town Council.

In a letter from CMKTC’s chairman Rebecca Kurth, stated: “The market has a substantial community value for our residents and those of neighbouring parishes.

“The market has been established in Market Square for over 30 years and provides a wide range of goods and services, including fresh produce and ethnic speciality foods at affordable prices for the local community.

“The market also provides important value in terms of social interest and social well-being.”

However, part owners CMK Britel Nominees do not agree.

They wrote: “We have made substantial investments in Milton Keynes for 30 years and is keen to see a thriving market in the town. In it’s current form however, the market is of poor quality, its location is inappropriate and it fails to serve properly the social wellbeing and interests of the community.”