Changes are being proposed with the aim of improving Southport’s ‘Market Quarter’ - and local people and businesses are being asked what they think after Sefton Council and Southport Town Deal launched their ‘Les Transformations de Southport’ consultation

Plans have been revealed to pedestrianise part of Market Street in Southport town centre, to build on the growing success of Southport Market and the flourishing ‘Market Quarter’. 

The scheme will provide opportunities for existing and new businesses in the area to expand, and for more events to be held. 

A new Sunday Outdoor Market is due to begin on Sunday 4th September, and more new events could follow. 

Southport Market celebrated its first birthday in July since its £1.4million transformation by Sefton Council into a new food, drink and events venue. 

The first 12 months saw 600,000 products sold and a turnover of more than £2.7million as the new facility flourished. 

It also succeeded in attracting new independent local businesses, filling previously empty units in the area, such as: Season Coffee, Bar and Kitchen; Urban Attic; The Cake Box; and Ewa’s Sewing Room. Plans are also underway to redevelop the former Coronation pub and the former McDonald’s site into a new German Doner Kebab outlet creating 30 new jobs. 

The area is now set to benefit from providing more public space and restricting traffic, so that “more people can enjoy the market and its surroundings, creating opportunities for new and existing businesses to develop and expand in that area.”. 

Market Street is due to be redeveloped under Sefton Council’s ‘Les Transformations de Southport’ initiative, with Eastbank Street, King Street and Chapel Street all set to enjoy changes thanks to £2.5million Town Deal funding in Phase One of the scheme. 

In his report to Sefton Council, Assistant Director of Place (Highways and Public Protection) Peter Moore said: “The refurbishment of Southport Market has proved very successful and many people are enjoying the new facilities there. 

“This project proposes changes to the streets around the Market, providing more public space and restricting traffic, so that more people can enjoy the market and its surroundings, creating opportunities for new and existing businesses to develop and expand in that area. 

“These proposals were included in the public consultation carried out in February / March 2022 and were generally well supported by people responding to the consultation.

“It is proposed to create a traffic free section on Market Street alongside the market, providing a new street environment that will provide additional space for pedestrians. 

“The traffic free section will also provide space for businesses to make use of the street environment throughout the year and scope for events to be held there. 

“This will require converting the existing carriageway to a new paved surface that will provide level access for pedestrians across the full width of the street but which can still be used for service and delivery vehicles at certain times. 

“In addition to formal planting, it is proposed to provide some new tree planting and seating along the street and both these elements were strongly supported in the public consultation. “New street lighting will be provided and the existing drainage along that section of Market Street will also be assessed and improvements incorporated if required. 

“The traffic free section is proposed to extend from the junction of King Street alongside the Market, as far as the service access to the Market. The section of the Street from the Market service entrance to the junction with Princes Street will remain open to traffic. However, Market Street is currently one-way towards Princes Street. It is proposed to change the section of Market Street between the Market service access and Princes Street to two way traffic to provide access to the Market and to properties along that section. This will require the removal of up to 6 parking spaces to provide sufficient width for two way traffic.”

The Southport Investment Framework in 2016 recommended improvements to the Southport Market area and included a specific recommendation, “Public realm improvements to King Street and Market Street will enable activities associated with the Market Hall to utilise this outdoor space for large scale outdoor markets, events and other uses associated with a revitalised market hall.” 

This idea was also identified in the Town Centre Access and Connectivity study (2018) which proposed that “King Street and Market Street are upgraded from Local Streets to Destination Streets.” 

One of the other Town Deal projects being planned for early delivery is the Enterprise Arcade on Eastbank Street. 

This will provide a new business incubator premises, focussing on the arts, creative and digital businesses emerging in the town. 

Its location on Eastbank Street means that it is ideally located for access to Southport Train Station and is linked with the growing Southport Market Quarter.

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  1. Suzanna Byrne 1 month ago

    How wonderful! Turning Market Street into a pedestrian area is brilliant. People seem to feel safe and comfortable in these areas and everyone can be a bit more relaxed with no moving traffic to deal with. It also enables the local businesses to be an integral part of the area and everyone benefits from that.

  2. Madeline 1 month ago

    I would be more impressed if they pedestrianised Chapel Street.It’s not just cyclists going up and down, but I’ve seen cars coming across from Hoghton Street traffic lights, and going straight down Chapel street, using it as a short cut. It’s the worst “shopping precinct” I’ve ever seen. The seats and the ground are always filthy.

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