Successive lockdowns may have highlighted the importance of our local shops during the darkest of pandemic days, but they also reminded us how much we missed our local markets. With an incredibly long history – some of the royal charters under which they were set up date back to early medieval times – these markets have long been integral to the character of many of our most attractive towns.
Whatever the season, market day is an excellent time to visit – although around autumn and the harvest, the food is often at its best. And while parking may not always be easy, you will get a real feel for what makes each town different, whether it’s the seasonal produce, handmade crafts or the local specialities available at the pop-up cafés and food stalls.
Not only that, but markets bring a vibrancy, colour and bustle to our town centres that we once took for granted. So here are 10 of Britain’s best – a great excuse to liven up a short break or make the most of a day away from the beach.
Isn’t it just a gateway to the rest of Yorkshire?
Maybe, but it’s a neat and pretty gateway that comes alive with traders on Thursdays, with stalls along the stone arcades of The Shambles and around the town hall. An artisan market is held on the second Sunday of the month, and on the last Sunday is the farmers’ market.