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Guest Blog from Levenshulme Market

January 22, 2015

Levenshulme Market is awarding £15,000-worth of grants to people who want to make a difference to Levenshulme high street or to start or develop their own retail businesses.

As a social enterprise, the team behind Levenshulme Market have always been loud proponents of the idea that bad high streets don’t happen to economically healthy retail environments and that putting a market into a high street with multiple problems is not going to solve those problems overnight. That is why, for their first ever Market Fund, they will be awarding £15,000-worth of grants to people who want to make a difference to Levenshulme high street and residents who want to start or develop their own retail businesses. Not only that, but they are asking the community to choose what they should fund.

Helen Power, Director of the Market, says: “We believe that empowering our community to take ownership of their high street and increasing their opportunities to become retail entrepreneurs themselves is just one approach to helping Levenshulme high street back on the right path. When we were established in 2013 we always knew that our end goal was to be a part of that process and we’re so excited to finally make that a reality”.

The team are now taking applications for their “high street innovation fund” which will take applications for grants up to £5000 and are open to anyone who has a retail or high street improvement project they would like to deliver in Levenshulme and for their “market innovation fund” which is designed for Levenshulme residents who want to start or improve their own business on the market and is taking applications up to £1000.

The money is taken from profits the Market has raised since it was established in 2013, with support from the South Manchester Regeneration Team of Manchester City Council. The Market is the only market established in the UK as a CIC (Community Interest Company – the legal form for social enterprises that ensures their social purpose is mandated within their day-to-day operations) and the first market to operate this innovative business model, which has seen them gain funding from UnLtd, Santander and TheUniversity of Manchester, among others, in order for them to expand their operations and make them ready to replicate their approach.

The Market is on hiatus through the winter months but will restart on Saturday 7th March 2015 and will operate every Saturday this year until December.

The team will be holding a drop in session for parties interested in applying for the grants on Saturday 31st January 2015, 2.00pm – 4.00pm, at the Inspire Café, Stockport Road, Levenshulme, M19 3AR and the final decisions on who will be funded by the scheme will be made by Levenshulme residents at an event being held on Sunday 8th March 2015, 5.00pm – 9.00pm, at The Klondyke Club, Burnage Range, Levenshulme, M19 2HQ.
For further information about the awards, how to enter and how to attend the voting event please visit Levenshulme Market website.

 

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