Power sockets and other facilities should be installed in the square in Kildare town to encourage the growth and promotion of the weekly market.
That’s according to Cllr Joanne Pender (Ind), who asked the council to make every effort to regulate the market place to make it safe and rejuvenate it.
Speaking at the recent Kildare Newbridge Municipal District meeting, she said it was important to encourage different types of traders to come on board. She said a lot of development was in the pipeline for Kildare and the town centre area should be looked at. She acknowledged there were issues with traders parking up on kerbs, but if the market was regulated properly and had a manager to liase with the traders, it might work better.
The council said a report on Draft Casual Trading Bye-Laws for Kildare Town was circulated to the former Kildare Area Committee in 2013, however due to lack of engagement from the traders at that time there was no progression on the issue.
“If the members are in agreement, Casual Trading Bye-Laws for Kildare Town can be reconsidered in consultation with the traders and other interested parties,” it said.
Cllr Suzanne Doyle (FF) agreed with Cllr Pender. She said some goods that were being sold at the market were not quite legal. Cllr Mark Stafford (FG) also concurred but said there were some excellent traders including a very good fish monger.
Cllr Fiona McLoughlin Healy (FG) supported the motion and pointed out that on foot of recent meetings with Kildare Village, perhaps they could work with the council in relation to the town centre so the town could benefit from their visitor numbers.
Cllr Mark Lynch (SF) also backed the proposal. The council said a lot of work had been done back in 2012, but the the draft bylaws fell down when the traders weren’t willing to get involved.
Cllr Pender said architect Simon Wall said there had been a vision for the development for Westport and there should be the same for Kildare town.
She said the plans for Cherry Avenue, the future of the Barracks site and other new developments in the town made it more important to look at the square. She said perhaps a liecence fee for traders could cover the cost of a manager.
She said it was important to get the traders involved in the process.
It was also suggested maybe that Thursday wasn’t the best day for a market compared to the weekend when people were off.