Artisan Market's future in doubt

9:00am Saturday 15th March 2014

THE artisan markets held in Northwich and Middlewich every month face an uncertain future after traders were sent a letter saying the company was to be dissolved.

The Artisan Market Company was set up by Denise Valente and Vicky Jackson in 2011 in an attempt to boost Wilmslow’s offering for townsfolk and customers.

It proved to be popular with shoppers and due to demand the first Middlewich event was held in July 2012, while the first market in Northwich took place in July 2013.

In January this year the market finished runner-up in Mary Portas’ High Street Champion of the Year Award.

But on Monday Ms Valente sent an email with a formal notification that the Artisan Market partnership had been legally dissolved.

The letter states that the business will no longer trade nor operate as the artisan market and that each of the partners will be able to undertake business on their own account, but not under the current name.

Vicky Jackson, one of the artisan market partners, said: “I believe in these town events and I am extremely passionate about them. They are about the communities, the traders, the town councils and the people who visit them.

“I will do my utmost to ensure that they continue.”

Middlewich Town Council confirmed that it was aware of the issues and said it is ‘working hard with one of the partners to ensure the artisan market can continue’.

Town clerk Jonathan Williams said: “Vicky Jackson came in to see us and there are issues with the name and trade mark.

“We hope these can be resolved as soon as possible and we are looking forward to the next artisan market.”

Northwich Town Council said it was still in a trial period with the market on a rolling ‘three-month deal’.

The market will continue its events that have been organised as part of the ‘wind-up’ of the Artisan Market partnership.

The letter adds that the company is ‘fully committed to fulfilling the outstanding commitments of the partnership and intends to do so as professionally as possible.’ Denise Valente declined to comment to the Guardian.

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