Calls to help the High Street

One of Rasen's empty shops EMN-151008-133547001
One of Rasen's empty shops EMN-151008-133547001

Calls have been made to help bring new businesses to Market Rasen’s High Street - and make the area more attractive to shoppers.

Visitors - and people living in the town - are calling for more spending on Market Rasen’s high street.

This stems from a perception that new businesses in Market Rasen open up “for a few months” before closing again.

Some residents are blaming this on “overheads” on properties.

Their comments followed an article in last week’s Rasen Mail which revealed a new partnership was working hard to improve the town’s 
markets.

Residents, though, believe investment in the High Street is also needed to bopst the local economy.

One resident said: “I think they should reduce the rents on the properties in the High Street.

“A shop sets up with selling goods, lasts for a few months and then it closes 
down.

“The overheads are just too high and it seems a shame.”

Another resident said: “The High Street needs sorting because all the shops are 
closing.

“There’s nothing to bring people in .

“The market can’t just be relied upon to bring people in. You need the shops as well.”

Market Rasen was one of 12 towns to win a £100,000 government grant as part of the Portas Pilot project in association with TV star Mary Portas, the ‘Queen of 
Shops’.

The project aimed to rejuvenate struggling UK High Streets.

Much of the effort in Market Rasen was put into revamping the Saturday markets, particularly the first Saturday of the month.

The funds and efforts were managed by the MR BIG voluntary group, whose directors - who were all volunteers - stepped down after an extra-ordinary general meeting in February.

Town councillor and former Mayor Steve Bunney said that the new Market Partnership’s main purpose would be together and employ someone to help develop Saturday markets”.

As a follow up, the Mail spoke to a residents about markets - and the situation inthe High Street where several shops have closed in recent months.

One resident believes that rents for pitches on regular Saturday markets “need to be cheaper”.

The resident, who did not want to be named, also said she thought the town needed to be ‘cleaned-up’ and that she had spoken to local councillors about the situation.

She added: “I’ve actually tackled the councillors about the state of the town.

“I approached one of their own stalls and said ‘What about cleaning the place up?’”

Another person, who said she was a regular visitor to the town, highlighted the importance of the High Street as a way to attract people - and maintain a community.

She said: “If you haven’t got a thriving High Street, you’ve got nothing but a dormer town.

“People have to go elsewhere to get their commodities.

“Without a thriving High Street you’ve got nothing to attract people like myself, and haven’t got a community.

“You can’t have one without the other.”

Market Rasen is, of course, not the only rural town in Lincolnshire where businesses are struggling.

l What do you think? Should more be done to help businesses in Market 
Rasen?

We are always keen to hear your views. You can email your views to us at rasenmail@jpress.co.uk