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Undertakers step in to help Downham Market stallholders

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Thanks to some seasonal goodwill from a local business, a group of market stallholders at Downham have been able enjoy their traditional two days of pre-Christmas trading in the town centre.

The traders were concerned they might miss out on vital trade on Thursday because, they claimed, of mixed messages being put out by the town council.

But with funeral directors A J Coggles coming to the rescue and offering them the use of their yard next to the market square, it has been a happy Christmas ending after all.

Downham Market 2. (2856220)
Downham Market 2. (2856220)

One trader said that while the Christmas Eve market was going ahead on the Market Place there had been issues over where they could set up their stalls on Thursday.

They said that it was a tradition to have stalls in the town centre over two days in the immediate run-up to Christmas to make the most of festive trade.

The trader said that the site they were offered for the Thursday was not suitable and suggested it was an attempt to “kill trade”.

They also said that there had been confusion over whether or not any markets were taking place and at one time they were concerned they might lose out on the busiest time of the year.

The same trader said that they had received a mass of support on social media and were grateful to Coggles for helping out, adding: “This is very heartwarming at Christmas. Everyone wants a happy ending at this time of year.”

John Coggles said they were approached by stallholders asking if they could use their yard as their other area was not available.

He said: “The market is very important to the town at this time of year.

“We are a traditional family business and like to help where we can so to facilitate the tradition of Christmas we are pleased to do this to help the community.”

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