The Market Co, a small family business, delivers the Artisan Market to towns and destinations across the region, offering a stage for exceptional produce and handcrafted items, wrapped together in a dynamic community event.
Fresh aromas, vivid colours, eclectic treasures, buzzing crowds – a mere stroll amongst the many (often 100+) stalls of an Artisan Market are enough to invigorate the senses and whet the appetite. These markets aim to keep things authentic, providing a rare but enchanting opportunity to meet the many food & craft producers & suppliers. The local entertainment and local community groups provide a real sense of ownership, adding to the atmosphere, the mix and bustle reminiscent of yesteryear with a contemporary twist.
It is a haven for anybody who cares about the quality and provenance of the food they eat, for those that seek something different from that on supermarket shelves. It provides a cornucopia of exquisite handcrafted, artistic items and an opportunity to interact with the artisan who has produced them.
But it’s not just the sheer quality of the items on offer that makes an Artisan Market so special – it is also about the people and the place. Locally based craftspeople and producers who are passionate about their products represent each event.
Most of our stallholders are themselves primary producers – people who grow, make, create, style, rear, craft or bake the products that they sell. Others are suppliers with intimate knowledge of their products and the people who made them.
As a result, the Artisan Markets have become a vast repository of culinary knowledge, artisan craftsmanship and skills from previous generations. It’s a place to explore, to ask questions, to discover new flavours, stumble upon raw talent, unearth entrepreneurship, nurture bygone mastery, and to savour a unique, buzzing atmosphere.
How it came about:
Town centres and shopping arenas as we knew them have changed considerably over recent years our mission since 2011 has been to help revitalize, add a new dimension and inject the buzz and effervescence back into the destination.
The explosion of online shopping is showing its effect and so our events are designed to offer an experience that this cannot deliver.
The low numbers of visitors in our town centres and shopping centres is causing them to lose their vibrancy and attraction to visitors having a direct detrimental effect on retail businesses. The place then becomes less attractive to new businesses and thus the downward cycle perpetuates itself.
People now demand so much more, they want an experience, they want customer service, and they want choice and knowledge, character and diversity.
By delivering the Artisan Market in towns and destinations across the region we are fulfilling all of these demands, and helping to reinvigorate the places we live in.
We provide an exciting, unique event that brings people together as a community. It encourages more people to visit and rediscover the many things it has to offer.
The towns and places we attend vary tremendously in demographics and size – but the key is that each event is adapted and integrated to the individual place’s own unique characteristics providing an event that the community can be proud of and take ownership.
The emergence of Covid-19 in early 2020 meant we as a company had to make a number of changes both to our physical markets and the way we provided a platform for our traders during lockdowns.
First, even before Governmental guidance, we created a comprehensive set of Covid Secure Measures so that if and when our events took place they could do so as safely as possible.
Secondly we, like many other small entrepreneurial businesses, recognized the need to flex our operations and pivot our focus to enable us to continue to provide a platform for our artisan traders throughout the lockdowns. And so #ArtisansOnline was created, developed and launched in the first lockdown of 2020.
Our core values reflect what is really important to us as a company and underpin The Market Co’s culture and ethos.
Artisan Markets are more than a place to buy or sell goods, they are all encompassing, dynamic events that bring the place alive.
We strive to source the very finest artisan traders and products to deliver a high quality and heterogeneous mix for our visitors. This offer compliments rather than competes with neighbouring retailers providing a synergistic environment.
Our events have a warmth about them as they provide a unique local feel and sense of pride, they increase visitor numbers to the destination, they improve the dwell time spent there, they showcase what the place has to offer every day of the month and ultimately we provide an exceptional day out for our visitors.
What we deliver:
The Market Co has an impressive track record in consulting and delivering award winning events (Wilmslow Artisan Market selected by Mary Portas as runner up in the Daily Telegraph – High Street Champion of the Year 2013).
Over a number of years, The Market Co has built up an enviable reputation, considerable knowledge and experience of what is required to enhance a destination by delivering an outstanding regular community event.
The critical success factors include thorough pre-event planning and preparation, local considerations and required outcomes, identification of and consultation with relevant parties, ascertainment and identification of various protocols, permissions and licences that are required and associated timeframes in which this can be achieved.
In essence we cover, what needs to be done and when, both leading up to and during the event to ensure a successful delivery and a positive outcome for the client.
The Market Co offers a comprehensive package to deliver the event on your behalf – site location and permissions, consultations, feasibility analysis, licenses, trader sourcing, logistics, planning, on-site management, infrastructure and marketing.
#ArtisansOnline is a permanent feature of The Market Co’s offer and will sit alongside our physical events as and when they can recommence.