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Market won't close

by Hayley Robinson

Rumours that Sittingbourne market is set to close in six months have been quashed.

Manager Martin Lee says traders have not been told they must vacate the site.

Though he admits stallholders will eventually have to move once regeneration works start in the area.

Supermarket giant Tesco plans to build a store north of the railway at Milton Creek.

A new bridge will also stretch south from Tesco, across the Eurolink Way and railway line, to St Michael’s Circus – a new-look road junction where pedestrians will have priority over cars, similar to that outside Ashford’s Debenham’s.

The area around The Forum shopping centre will also be completely redeveloped with a multi-screen cinema and entertainment venue creating a cultural quarter.

There will not be any cars. Instead it will be somewhere to sit and relax and enjoy a coffee.

The development is being undertaken by the Spirit of Sittingbourne Consortium which is made up of mill siteowners Essential Land, developer Cathedral Group and financial fund manager Alyton.

Mr Lee said: "We are already in talks with the council. I’m not sure what the phasing of works is going to be but it’s probably about two years away.

"I’m not concerned. We know we will be relocated. They will find us somewhere. The market is not going to close at all."

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