The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Hundreds of people celebrated the first birthday of Southport Market in style. 

There was a day and an evening full of Birthday Bonanza entertainment, for people of all ages. 

The daytime was packed with families enjoying dancing from DBA School of Dance, dinosaur puppets from Star Kids, story time with Jude Lennon, crafts with pebbles & Treasures, circus skills, bouncy castles, soft-play, and more. 

During the evening guests were treated to music from local DJ Mark Pickup and hit songs from soul sensation Dave Broe. 

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Jude Cherry said: “It was lovely to be part of the day and the celebrations. Thanks to everyone who bought books, stopped for a chat or joined in with my story reading.”

Tony Wynne said: “I love Southport Market…. a great place! They all helped us so much with our Ukrainian fundraising event in April.”

Jennifer Berrett said: “It was such a good day. Well done and happy birthday Southport Market.”

DJ Mark Pickup at the first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

DJ Mark Pickup at the first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Vickie Marshall said: “Such an honour to be a part of the day! We have loved organising this event with Leah.”

More than a quarter of a million tasty treats have been served up during the new-look Southport Market’s first year of operation.

The original Southport Market first opened its doors on 7th September 1881 in a ceremony performed by the Earl of Derby to replace the Chapel Street Market. The new large market opening ceremony included a great gala with a procession and banquet.

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The traditional market traders were in their new home until the buildings were destroyed by a fire in 1913. 

The present Market Hall was built in 1931, and was home to scores of traditional market traders over the next 90 years. 

Due to changing shopping and dining habits, Sefton Council then took the bold decision to transform one of Southport’s most historic and much-loved buildings into something very new and exciting for visitors – and it has thrived, enjoying a new lease of life with visitors from around the North West.

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Statistics show that 279,400 dishes from around the world have been served up since the Market launched and that over 94,000 thirst-quenching pints have been poured.

Since opening on Thursday 22 July 2021 following a huge refurbishment, the new-look Southport Market on King Street has revitalised the town’s Market Quarter. This has resulted in new business opportunities and investment to the surrounding area.

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Ther £1.4million transformation, led by Sefton Council, was secured through £900,000 from the Government’s Town Deal initiative with a further £500,000 from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. 

Southport Market has also been hailed by a number of campaigners for its impressive accessibility provisions – the Market boasts a bespoke  Changing Places space which is a fully accessible toilet and changing facility for people with disability needs, as well as multiple points of access for wheelchair users and families with prams.

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Southport Market’s incredible first year in numbers

  •           279,470 dishes served
  •           94,588 pints of beer sold
  •           9,564 burritos stuffed (Hector’s Mexicana)
  •           11,249 Greek gyros wrapped (Pitamu)
  •           10,477 portions of poutine created (Down & Oot)
  •           22,663 pizza bases fired (600 Degrees Pizza)
  •           15,000 portions of French fries topped (Allotment)
The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Sweeter treats are also available at the Market in the form of baked goods from Cake Corner and fresh ice cream, multiple toppings from Conehead. And for those preferring to buy something high-quality to eat at home, there’s family-run Blackhurst Butchers who have been at Southport Market for nearly 60 years.

As well as being home to food and drink outlets Southport Market also hosts free Thursday evening music events and a weekly, local crafts market that is also held on Thursdays. And, its Extravaganza Room will soon be available to hire for events and parties. 

Star Kidz with their dinosaur puppets at the first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Star Kidz with their dinosaur puppets at the first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: 

“Firstly, I want to say a huge thank you to our staff, our traders and everyone who has visited Southport Market in the last year.

“From the moment we announced our plans to transform the former market into a food & drink hall and community space it was clear there was a real desire and demand for a venue like this in Southport.

“Not only has Southport Market been a success in its own right but it has helped to boost the market quarter area of the town centre and we have seen dozens of new businesses and enterprising traders gravitate towards this hub of excitement. 

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

 “It’s not just about the food either – the Market itself and accompanying events space have been a welcome home for a host of different community groups, economic forums, conventions and more.

“This is a very exciting time for Sefton and Southport, and we continue to look at all opportunities for regeneration to benefit our communities.”

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Ross Perkins of Canadian themed Down & Oot said: 

“Since opening Down & Oot last July we are really proud of the business that we have grown.

“We have brought new and exciting cuisine to Southport and our speciality Canadian poutine has been a huge hit.”

Dan Johnson of 600 Degrees Pizza said:

 “Our unit in Southport Market has allowed us to build on our growing brand and we have seen plenty of regular customers come through our doors to get their pizza fix which is really satisfying as a small business and we appreciate all of the loyalty.”

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

Southport Market is gearing up for a bumper summer by opening six days a week throughout the holiday period.

Starting from Tuesday (July 26th), the hugely popular food and drink hall – which celebrated its first birthday yesterday – will open Tuesday to Sunday for the next six weeks as families enjoy the Summer holidays.

Doors to the King Street based Southport Market will open from 10am each day, with extended opening hours on Fridays and Saturdays.

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

The first birthday celebrations at Southport Market. Photo by Mark Shirley

As well as a worldwide culinary smorgasbord of tasty treats and thirst quenching drinks, there will be live entertainment every Thursday, and fun-filled events for all the family.

All the details about the Market are at www.southportmarket.com

Do you have a story for Stand Up For Southport? Please message Andrew Brown via Facebook here or email me at: mediaandrewbrown@gmail.com

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