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Press release / Somerset town employs Super Market powers to boost local economy

Press release issued for Frome Super Market

Frome is one town making changes to bring about an upturn to its local economy.

The market town on the edge of the Mendip Hills is no stranger to doing things differently.  The town was recently described in The Guardian as providing “proof that local people power can get things done” and having “important lessons for other councils”.

Frome’s new monthly Super Market is one such initiative.

“The whole town becomes a market.  There isn’t anything like this – it’s a real celebration of what Frome does very well” explains Peter Wheelhouse – the Somerset town’s newly appointed economic development and regeneration manager:  a new council role.

“I haven’t seen anything like the Frome supermarket, there’s a real atmosphere at the event.

“It brings together the best artisan products from the Frome area, plus the best food and drink.  The event brings a lot of new people to the area which can only be a good thing.”

He explains that the council and its market partners have already started collating feedback from the first two events.  They hope to be in a strong position to continue running the markets, once the third Frome Super Market event has taken place at the beginning of September.

This monthly market initiative has been launched as a three-month experiment, combining the existing Frome Artisan and Flea markets with other market collectives to produce an event which spreads through the town.

At the first of these trial events in July this year, 150 market stalls occupied the town’s streets, attracting thousands of visitors.

Peter Wheelhouse added:  “I see the Frome Super Market going from strength to strength and not only attracting new interest to the town and area, but encouraging visitors to stay longer.

“Traders report that they find it a great place to showcase their talent and products to a new, as well as loyal audience.  They value the support the event has attracted and love being part of this new super market concept.”

The pilot of Frome’s Super Market concludes with the event on the first Sunday in September and already, the success of this trial exercise is easy to predict.

Offering an atmosphere described as being more festival like than traditional market, the Somerset town’s market cleverly flips the term ‘supermarket’ on its head.

The council has recently launched a short online film, to provide town visitors with a flavour of the Super Markets, which can be viewed at fromesupermarket.co.uk

“Frome isn’t a town that waits for things to change – it makes them do so.  The evolution of this market is a great example” Peter Wheelhouse said.

“The success of these events has far exceeded our expectations, we’re very pleased that once again, Frome has taken the lead on doing things differently – and better.”

The third Frome Super Market takes place on Sunday 2nd September.  Visitors are advised that the town centre will be closed to through traffic from 6am but all public car parks will be open.

Note for editors:

The Frome Super Market is a new joint venture between Frome Town Council, Mendip District Council’s Frome People’s Market, the St Catherine’s Artisan Market, Frome Flea and Somerset Farmers Market.

Frome Super Market film and stills by Doubleshot.

Please contact Avalanche PR for more information about this press release, or high res images.