THEY may have seen better days and the numbers attending may have dropped but Fenland Council is determined to renew the nation’s love affair with their weekly markets.

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The council may have given over the running of Wisbech market to the town council but that still leaves March, Chatteris and Whittlesey under the stewarding of the district council.

And cometh the hour, cometh the man to revitalise them- Councillor Pop Jolley, whose Cabinet roles include responsibility for markets.

On Saturday he was out in March to launch the first of a series of ‘love your market’ campaigns.

There were free samples and shoppers given free bags to help them take home meat, eggs or vegetables from some of the stalls.

Although some days have been quiet through a particularly bad winter, the council was blessed with bright sunshine as they launched the new campaign.

“Think local, buy local and eat local” was the mantra of Cllr Jolley as he welcomed visitors to the market.

With newspapers and the media brimful of depressing news about horse meat being found in a growing number of products, it seemed a good day to be promoting a return to more traditional values and certainties of origin.

Mike Chapman, Fenland District Council’s markets and events manager, said: “The event went really well and traders were delighted with the response.

“Our markets play a vital role in bringing people into town centres, which means other businesses benefit as well as the market traders themselves. So over the next few months we’re looking to put on a range of different promotions to pull more people in.”

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