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Allerdale’s ‘virtual market’ launches to support traders during national restrictions

Stephen Hey, Keswick Market

Customers who shop at markets across Allerdale can continue to support their favourite traders while national restrictions are in place – with the launch of a new ‘virtual market’.

Allerdale Borough Council’s markets have been postponed in line with Government guidance and will resume when restrictions are eased. However, people can still support the array of businesses who normally trade at the council-run markets in Workington, Keswick and Wigton through their online offering or via home deliveries.

The council has created a new section of its website to list the traders currently offering alternative ways of buying their products with the directory now online at https://www.allerdale.gov.uk/en/sport-leisure-arts-culture/markets/virtual-market/.

Low Howgill at Keswick Market

Cllr Mike Johnson, Deputy Leader of the council, said: “We know these times are tough for many businesses, and market traders are no exception, that’s why as a council we’re doing our upmost to support local firms in a variety of ways.

“Our markets make a big contribution to the towns they run in and I would urge everyone to take a look at the new online service and see what’s on offer. While our markets are not running please continue to support the traders and other local businesses where possible.”

Among the businesses to feature in the new virtual market is Spirit of Keswick. Owners James and Jo McIntyre said: “Keswick Market has been our home for over 10 years now and was the springboard to us launching the distillery. The one constant has been the support from the community of traders and other business owners in Keswick who welcome our amazing tourists year-round.

“Sadly those tourists have once again been asked to stay home, but with the wonders of modern technology you can now meander around our award-winning market from the comfort of your front room. We are so excited to be part of Keswick’s virtual market and hope you enjoy your visit.”

Adam Marks and Dan Hunt, joint owners of Mr Vikkis who trade at Keswick Market, said: “We are delighted to stay connected to our customers and traders through the virtual marketplace, we think it’s a fun place to be and can’t wait to participate. Hopefully before too long we will be back in the real marketplace.”

Carolyn Wright, from Beadsnbeeswax, who sells handmade candles, melts and jewellery at Workington Market, said: “We are really excited to be a part of this unique idea.”

Silloth’s town centre market does not run during the winter months and traders will be added to the online directory when it resumes.

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