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New operator for historic town market 

RUGBY's town centre market is to be run by a specialist market operator for the first time.

Cllr Seb Lowe
Cllr Seb Lowe, Leader of Rugby Borough Council. Published Wednesday, 18th January 2023

The market has been trading in Rugby under a Royal Charter since 1235 on various sites, including off Railway Terrace and at Gas Street. It is currently trading on its original site at Market Place in the centre of the town.

Now, after a consultation showed public appetite for more food and drink, craft and speciality stalls, and having reviewed its options, Rugby Borough Council has appointed CJ's Events to run the market on the council's behalf.

CJ's Events currently operates weekly markets at Warwick and Kenilworth, as well as various other specialist markets and events in Warwickshire and the West Midlands.

CJ's Events will manage the town market from market day on Friday 3 February with objectives to increase stall numbers and footfall. The operator is working with current and past traders as well as bringing additional traders to increase the choice of produce at the market.

The market is currently run by Rugby First, the not-for-profit Business Improvement District, which has supported the switch to a specialist operator.

Cllr Seb Lowe, Leader of Rugby Borough Council, said: "Rugby market is popular with residents and brings extra footfall to other town centre businesses on market days.

"Recent consultations on our town centre regeneration strategy show strong public support for a revitalised market, and contracting a specialist operator will give it the best change of thriving.

With their knowledge and experience, CJ's Events will bring a fresh look and new traders. And with the right support the market can bring a new generation of residents to shop with town centre businesses."

Jamie John Walker, Company Director at CJ's Events, said: "We are thrilled to have secured the contract for Rugby Market and look forward to working closely with Rugby Borough Council to bring new life into not only the market, but also the town.

We are confident that we can deliver a quality market which will help drive footfall into the area, helping local businesses to thrive."

The switch is one of the first changes Rugby Borough Council is making as part of the Rugby Town Centre Regeneration Strategy. The strategy sets out a long-term ambition to bring new homes and new retail, independent retail and leisure uses to the town centre, alongside shorter-term changes such as events and other "meanwhile" activities.

CJ's Events are already working with existing traders to prepare for the transition. New traders can sign up at www.cjseventswarwickshire.co.uk or by contacting the company on 01926 800750.

Rugby market operates on Fridays and Saturdays.

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