Market Operators Licence application 407604 : James Court and Lady Stairs Close

Continental Market Ltd has applied for Market Operators Licences at four locations : James Court/Lady Stairs Close, Hope Street, High Riggs and St Patrick’s Square,

Old Town Community Council (OTCC) objects to their application at James Court and outside the Writer’s Museum on Lady Stairs Close. We encourage you to object before the deadline (Monday, 13th May 2019).

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The company proposes to introduce stalls at eight locations in James Court and outside the Writers Museum in Lady Stairs Close The eight rectangles on the map, represent where the eight proposed market areas would be located. This was provided by Continental Market Ltd on their licence application.

Continental Market Ltd has applied for a market operators licence at these eight locations in James Court and outside the Writers Museum on Lady Stairs Close.

Old Town Community Council undertook a poll on twitter. It was open for 24 hours. 262 people voted. 76 people were in favour of this licencing application, and 186 against.

OTCC objects, for the following reasons :

It’s Vague

The application is silent on what merchandise and food would be sold in James Court and outside the Writer’s Museum on Lady Stairs Close. So we made some enquiries. Continental Market Ltd proposes to sell food including, paella and German sausages. They also propose to sell non-food items too including, handmade jewellery and wood carving.

Continental Market Ltd has not explained how they will manage the extra noise, the extra extra vermin coming for food and used food containers thrown around on Lady Stair’s Close, James Court, Lawnmarket and North Bank Street.

They have not outlined plans for street-sweeping and rubbish collection.

Continental Market Ltd has not indicated if they will take their waste with them, or will it end up in nearby communal bins.

The application is silent on the number of days – and dates – of operation. However, as this is an annual application, Continental Market Ltd would be able to use the eight locations as they wished, between the hours of 9am and 7pm, seven days a week.

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The applicant has not indicated the number of square meters they would occupy in each of the eight locations.

Continental Market Ltd has not indicated the size of individual stalls

Location

The proposed location is within the UNESCO World Heritage Site and is highly unsuitable for this Application

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Some of the stalls would be erected on top of finely carved flagstones in Makars’ Court. These were laid as part of the #UNESCO City of Literature, to commemorate Scotland’s great writers.

Congestion

James Court and Lady Stairs Close is a Residential Historic area and an access route to residential accommodation.

This area is already frequently congested.

Residents have to cope with up to 20 large tour groups an hour. Each tour group has a minimum of 15 guests.

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Financial

This application would have a detrimental effect on the many of the retail outlets on Lawnmarket, North Bank Street, Bank Street and surrounding areas. Their operating costs are far higher than the fees paid by holders Market Operator Licences.

It would conflict with the Grassmarket Weekend Market operators. They already work extremely hard to provide a service to the Community and Visitors.

Quick Link : How to object to licence applications

This application would join the growing numbers of incoming low cost operators who take advantage of the Tourist Season and then Vanish. They take lots and gives very little back to the City and its upkeep.

Quick Link : How to object to licence applications

13th May 2019 is the deadline for objections to this licensing application7

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