Private management plan decision deferred for City market

The Highland Council’s City of Inverness Area Committee has agreed to defer inviting tenders for a contract to privately manage the City’s Victorian Market.

Members agreed that a report be produced for the next meeting of the committee which considers:

  • setting up a stakeholder group including local councillors, businesses, traders and neighbouring traders;
  • a charrette-style event;
  • a report on options for the Inverness Common Good Fund to engage a retail property in-house manager;
  • a timeline to conclude these activities and consultation, that completes within a 6 month period; and
  • that a seminar be held in order to establish the City of Inverness Area Committee’s vision for the Victorian Market.

Provost and Leader of the City of Inverness Councillor Helen Carmichael said: “The changes required for the Victorian Market are about moving forward and looking at how the Victorian Market can improve.

“The Council has met, listened to and discussed with the traders their concerns on 27 August, 24 November last year and 12 January this year. Officers have advised us that the bottom line is that this Inverness Common Good Fund owned facility is currently not economically viable and we need to take action. Whatever the outcomes - a phased approach is proposed for the implementation of a new management plan for the market with stakeholder engagement a key factor in any proposed changes.”

The Victorian Market is an asset of the Inverness Common Good Fund which is managed by The Highland Council on behalf of the Trustees of the Common Good Fund. Replacement of the market’s roof at £0.966m in 2012 and works planned for the Academy Street entrance will result in the property operating at a loss to the Common Good Fund. The Highland Council is duty bound to ensure that it attains the best possible return for Inverness Common Good Fund assets.

28 Jan 2016