Market traders complain about unfair rents

PUBLISHED: 13:10 16 April 2008 | UPDATED: 13:12 06 May 2010

MARKET traders facing higher costs for their stalls after well-above-inflation rent increases are angry that specialty market stallholders are being charged less. St Albans District Council (SADC) recently increased their market charges on Wednesdays by

MARKET traders facing higher costs for their stalls after well-above-inflation rent increases are angry that specialty market stallholders are being charged less.

St Albans District Council (SADC) recently increased their market charges on Wednesdays by 7.1 per cent and on Saturdays by 6.8 per cent.

The Farmer's Market, held on the second Sunday of each month and the French Market, held two to three times a year, are both specialty markets.

Ivor Gold, vice-chairman of the St Albans Market Traders Association, said he knew Farmers Market stallholders paid at least £10 less for their stalls despite the fact they cost more to erect on a Sunday. He added: "After the latest increases we asked how much the French market people were paying but no-one would tell us.

"We're the mainstay here week after week attracting people to the city so we don't appreciate being told specialty markets have to be treated differently because they bring people in."

A spokesperson for SADC said: "It is difficult to compare the rates for the specialty markets with the regular market rates as they receive different services. The rates they pay reflect this and are negotiated on a commercial basis. The French and Farmer's markets are attractions to St Albans, bringing in a lot of people from around the district. "

He added that the French market traders did pay to have market stalls but the exact amount was confidential business information.

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