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Our Markets Matter

The Our Markets Matter strategy shows how the Council will operate its traditional markets going forward in order to produce outstanding markets.

It highlights some of the markets' great achievements, such as supporting traders to become award-winning business owners, providing industry leading start-up packages and supporting local charities in order to give something back to the community.

To achieve our goal of producing outstanding markets, we will do six key things:

Provide operational excellence

  • We will ensure our markets are clean, tidy, safe and a place where people want to return to.
  • We will invest in our staff. The Markets team are fully qualified Market Managers through the National Association of British Market Authorities (NABMA) and have a Level 4 Diploma in Markets' Administration.
  • We provide regulations to operate our markets through the Trader Working and Quality Standards document.
  • We continue to develop up-to-date risk assessments and ensure the quality of the market offer remains a high standard, through five star food and hygiene ratings. We work with NABMA and the National Market Traders Federation (NMTF) and joined the Real Deal national campaign to make sure shoppers can purchase products safely.
  • Our markets stand out from the crowd as we give bespoke market canopy sets to traders that are free of charge.


Provide outstanding start-up and training packages

  • We want to achieve a goal of having 100 per cent occupancy levels across all our towns' markets.
  • We support market traders through free use of a gazebo, tables and chairs, four weeks free rent and free insurance.
  • We offer traders incentives to bring in other traders from other markets.
  • We will continue to roll-out our leading market trader course 'Pitch up for Retail' which was the first market trader course in the country with a recognised qualification.
  • We will continue to form partnerships with schools and colleges to provide experience of business and retail.
  • We will continue to work with the Council's business engagement team to direct future talent towards available support and provide space for new retailers to grow.


Produce effective promotion of the markets through family orientated events

  • We will improve how we promote the Markets through our communications channels.
  • We put market traders at the heart of our communications plans and work to educate them about the benefits of online promotion.
  • We will continue to host family orientated events all year round.
  • We will build on the reputation of Stockton Market as 'The Queen of the North'. In 2017 it was voted as 'Best Large Outdoor Market'.


Make our markets sustainable

  • We will improve our waste collection services and increase our recycling rates to above 80 per cent.
  • We will work with traders to educate and develop new ways to recycle waste.
  • We will adapt to new methods of cleaning our town centres and reduce the amount of waste in the markets. In 2020 we purchased a Tomcat electric scrubber dryer to clean our pavements more efficiently.


Make the Markets a community hub

  • We will continue to provide free space for local charity and community groups to give something back to the community.
  • We will provide space for local entertainment groups and schools to perform and improve visitor experience.
  • We will ensure Stockton-on-Tees Markets are fully accessible for all groups.


Providing outstanding customer service

  • We are lively, entertaining, funny and always ensure a traditional market atmosphere for customers.
  • We ensure that members of the team embrace Council cultures and values.
  • We never lose sight of the fact that we are here to serve the people of the Borough.
  • We are helpful, polite and friendly. We take our time to understand the needs of our customers and try to find solutions to their problems.
  • We listen and act on customer feedback.