AMBITIOUS plans are afoot to give budding 16 to 30-year old retail entrepreneurs the chance to shine a light at a series of special markets across England.
Cash prizes are up for grabs in the Young Traders Market programme, devised by the NMTF, the only national UK organisation representing market and street traders, events retailers and mobile caterers.
The aim is simple according to the NMTF’s CEO Joe Harrison: “We have a great retail markets industry in the UK, but to make sure they thrive in the years to come we have to bring new blood, young entrepreneurs with fresh ideas on to our markets,” he said.
Market operators are being encouraged to stage local events, and then nominate the best young traders for a regional final.
They will then compete for a place at the Young Traders Market national final at Stratford-upon-Avon at the end of August.
The hunt is on to find those young traders across seven English regions. And all those who are interested have to do is feed in www.nmtf.co.uk and click on the Young Traders Market panel.
Instantly they will be able to see where the regional finals are being staged and what local events are available. And if they want to give it a go they are just a click away from signing up.
There is no cost to the young trader apart from any necessary travel and accommodation expenses.
Joe Harrison said the NMTF was flexible about the type of entries.
“We know this project works because we tried it on a much smaller scale last year at youth markets, with regional finals in Leeds and Manchester before the national event in Stratford.
“This year we are inviting as many young people as possible to get involved, whether they are would-be traders who want to dip their toe in the water, others who have been trading for some time, perhaps on a part-time basis, and perhaps those who have traded exclusively online but think a market pitch could be their shop window.”
Many market operators are taking part but others who want to get involved are urged to express their interest by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Regional finals will be taking place at Derby (July 13), Wells in Somerset (July 25), Newcastle-upon-Tyne (July 27), York (August 1), Warrington (August 3), Westminster (August 8) and Wolverhampton (August 10).
The national final will be held at Stratford-upon-Avon’s historic Waterside location on August 30 and 31.
The NMTF, previously known as the National Market Traders Federation, was founded in 1899 to safeguard the interests of the UK’s retail market traders. It now has around 20,000 members.
The Young Traders Market is the new name for the NMTF’s National Youth Market, changed to better reflect the 16 to 30-year-old age group.
For high and low resolution of pictures from previous National Youth Market events, including winners, and the Young Traders Market logo, go to http://tiny.cc/ytm19
The location of local events can be found by visiting http://tiny.cc/ytm19events
Contacts for the markets involved in the campaign can be found by going to www.nmtf.co.uk/markets