A contractor has been appointed to deliver the £4.5 million Bolton Market refurbishment scheme.
Bolton Council has appointed Willmott Dixon as its contractor partner for the project.
Willmott Dixon has extensive experience with retail and refurbishment projects and the company has delivered more than 30 retail and 110 refurbishment projects in the last five years.
Work to redevelop the market will start in January with completion of the refurbishment planned by late 2013. Work to the car park and servicing area will finish in 2014.
Indoor market traders in the non-food section will be mainly affected by the refurbishment, and they will be relocated temporarily on to the current outdoor market during February.
The market’s fruit and veg section and the fish market will be open for business as usual.
Leader of Bolton Council, Councillor Cliff Morris, said: “We are delighted to have appointed Willmott Dixon to redevelop Bolton Market as they have a long and successful track record with retail and refurbishment projects like this.
“They have worked on many retail projects in the north west which have required the sites to be remodelled similar to what we’re doing in Bolton.
“We are now working closely with them on this project which will make our market even better.
“The market is one of our main shopping destinations and while work is underway it will still be open for business as usual, and we will make every effort to minimise disruption.”
The Bolton Market scheme builds on the quality and strength of its food offer. Improvements that will take place include: refurbishing the roof on the fish market; replacing the roof on the eastern hall, which houses the non-food section; introducing additional indoor food stalls and a seating area in the eastern hall; and repairing the roof over the western hall, which contains the fresh fruit and vegetable traders. The outdoor market will be moved to New Street closer to the planned new transport interchange.
The design team for the project is led by architects Davis Wetherill Partnerships who have recently completed the refurbishment of the Grade II listed Accrington Market Hall for Lancashire County Council.
The Managing Director for Willmott Dixon, Anthony Dillon, added: “We are delighted to be working with Bolton Council and the Davis Wetherill Partnership in delivering what will be significant improvements to such an important and historic market.
“We will be working closely with Bolton Council to ensure we maximize the local economic benefit through engagement with local subcontractors, suppliers, and the employment of local labour.”
Bolton Market opened in the 1930s and is one of Britain’s oldest food markets. The market has a growing reputation as the premier food market in the north of England.
It has won a number of awards including Best Food Market in the BBC Radio 4 Food and Farming Awards 2011; Best Indoor Market 2010; and Tourism Retailer of the Year 2009.
Up to three million people visit the market annually. The indoor and outdoor market is open Tuesday and Thursday to Saturday, 9am to 5pm. The car boot market is open Sunday, 7.30am to 2pm.