Council search for operator to take on two year licence for renewed Ramsgate weekly market

Ramsgate town Photo Brian Whitehead

Thanet council is looking for an operator to create a thriving, weekly market in Ramsgate.

The town centre, Friday market shut when covid restrictions were brought in during March 2020. It briefly reopened in June of that year but issues around placement meant the market closed again. A new site proposed for Pier Yard car park on the seafront was scuppered at the 11th hour.

Traders were then given the go-ahead to use Staffordshire Street car park, taking space in several disabled parking bays. But there was a drop in traders taking part on Fridays and none willing to set up for business at the site on Saturdays.

The low number of stalls meant falling income, with then-operator Hughmark making a decision to cease trade in the town.

In October 2020 Thanet council said there were plans to create a new Canterbury style format with gazebos and themed days and the market contract would go out to tender. This plan did not move forward.

In June last year, Cabinet members approved proposals to secure a new operator for the market. It also agreed to remove existing street trading and hawking restrictions on the High Street, King Street and Queen Street.

The proposal is for the new market to run every Friday in the High Street and Queen Street.

Thanet council will be responsible for the promotion of the market. The new operator will be offered a two year licence. They will have the freedom to choose the traders, fees and market stalls. There will be an option to renew at the end of two years if a sustainable market has been established.

Council leader Cllr Rick Everitt said: “Ramsgate Market is close to the heart of many residents and we know they are keen to see it return. It also helps support the existing businesses in the town centre by increasing footfall.

“The council is confident that there is significant support for a new, improved offering. A successful market provides a real focus for any town.

“This is a great opportunity for an operator to make their mark on Ramsgate, and we welcome creativity and new approaches. I would encourage all interested parties to apply for the two-year licence.”

You can learn more or request an application pack by emailing: [email protected]

The deadline for licence applications is Thursday 14 September.



  1. About time too! How has it taken so long for TDC to get to this stage? The market brought in significant footfall to the town centre previously and the new independent businesses that have opened recently along with more established shops could do with the support.

  2. Pleased one of my suggestions to boost Ramsgate is going to happen. It’s not Rocket science to run a market. My other suggestion is any business that takes over an empty shop/unit in Ramsgate has a 50% cut in business tax for the first 2 years. On the condition the landlord does the same reduction on rent. Sure sign Labour is in control of TDC making thing happen instead of the useless Tories.

    • The business will be paying the business rates, not the landlord…

      Business Rates are set and handed over to central government – what do you propose cutting to subsidise the reduction for the £ that the government will be expecting ?

    • After 2 years of cheap business tax can they just leave and find somewhere else that is offering cheap rates, or will you put a clause in the contract that states they have to stay there for a certain amount of years after the initial 2 years, and pay full business rates. There used to be a market in Ramsgate for many years, initially in the car park at the Greyhound stadium. The council are saying it’s a “new” market. What is going to be “new” about it. Surely it’s going to be the same market but post lockdown.

  3. Step up Petere Checksfield, this is the opportunity you have been waiting for, so you can earn an honest living!

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