By Tristan Harris Thursday 05 September 2013 Updated: 06/09 10:10
A CONSORTIUM has been formed in a bid to bring back Rubery Market which was forced to close its doors on Saturday (August 31) following financial difficulties.
The traders who have joined forces are currently investigating the venue's viability and hope to get it back up and running as soon as possible.
One of the consortium told The Standard: "We want to ensure the market stays open, gets better and provides a service to the people who back us.
"We want our customers to be able to buy items at a decent price and give them more to choose from.
"As a consortium we will have the power to buy better items at lower prices and give more variety to our customers."
Paul and Julie Larner launched the market by the Co-Op on New Road in November 2011 but, after less than two years, the venue had to shut because of financial difficulties.
Mr Larner told The Standard the pair had been let down by people who owed them money and they were unable to continue trading.
The pair had been criticised by some about the short notice given to the traders but, Mr Larner said, they only knew themselves that the market had to close last Tuesday (August 27), the day after the bank holiday. He said those with stalls were contacted on that day and the rest of them, who they could not initially get in touch with, were told the following morning.
"We were speaking to the council about taking it on, but they do not have the resources to do it."
He said he and his wife hoped to develop the building into a market and then sell the business on, but it was not to be.
He added, in hindsight, the venture needed someone behind it with retail experience.
"I think a market could work in Rubery, but it needs people who know what they are doing," he said.
Despite the closure of the market, the Gallery Cafe is still open.
Owner Mike Oakley said: "We want to make sure customers know that we are still here and trading."
The consortium member added: "We want to say a big thank to all of our customers who supported us while the market was open and we hope to see you again very soon."
* What would you like to see at Rubery Market? Send us your views to email@example.com and we will pass your ideas onto the consortium.
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