Barnard Castle Farmers' Market shortlisted for national award
BARNARD Castle Farmers’ Market is in the running for a national award.
The monthly mart has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Farmers’ Market of the Year in the awards, run by the Farm Retail Association.
Barney is up against Great Malvern, from Worcestershire, Moseley, in the West Midlands and Hampshire Farmers’ Markets.
Carol Parker, Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market manager, said she was delighted to have made the final.
She said: “I was so encouraged by the support that we received from customers at our November market, during the latest lockdown, that I decided to submit an entry for the awards
“The application form was considered alongside our website and Facebook presence – from this first stage we were delighted to find out that we are a finalist.
“Stage two involves an independent judging visit to collect additional data. This could be a visit to the market itself, phone interviews, and further review of social media, all of which is scored against identified performance criteria.”
Whatever, the outcome, Ms Parker said the judge’s report is made available to finalists following the announcement of winners.
“We look forward to receiving this feedback as input to how we take the market forward and keep it evolving,” she added.
Barney’s farmers’ mart rounded off 2020 with its final market of the year last weekend, when a full complement of traders attended.
Due to the first coronavirus lockdown, two markets were missed earlier this year, but Barney was one of the first markets to resume when restrictions were lifted in June.
Farm Retail Association chairman Rob Copley said: “We wish every finalist in the very best of luck.
“This year especially, farmers markets have helped to keep the nation fed, offering easy access to fresh, nutritious and affordable British food.
“Supporting local farmers and local jobs, farmers markets are at the beating heart of communities across the country.
“We hope customers keep coming back to support them and local farmers for years to come.”
There are 19 finalists shortlisted for six awards in total.
Categories include: Rising Star (newcomers to the industry); Large Farm Shop of the Year (turnover over £1.5m); Small Farm Shop of the Year (turnover under £1.5m); Farmers’ Market of the Year; Farm Café/Restaurant of the Year; Supplier Member of the Year.
The winners will be announced on Wednesday, March 3, next year at a virtual awards, taking place as part of the association’s annual industry conference, Stronger Together.