Ap­petite for change

MAL­TON: Hav­ing rein­vented it­self as a foodie cen­tre of York­shire, Chris Berry takes a stroll around Mal­ton, where big changes are afoot.

Yorkshire Post - YP Magazine - - Advertising Feature -

NE or two years ago you might have been for­given for think­ing that Mal­ton was that nice old mar­ket town just off the A64. Per­haps you didn’t re­ally think any more about it other than see­ing the sign for it be­cause the lure of the coast may have been your rea­son for be­ing on the road any­way.

Pick­er­ing, just nine miles north, has al­ways at­tracted the tourist trade and day trip­pers be­cause of its closer prox­im­ity to the North York Moors, its steam en­gines and fab­u­lous rail­way line, and be­ing on the way to Whitby.

So what does Mal­ton have to en­tice peo­ple away from those kind of at­trac­tions? Or at very least what does it have to do to add to your list of places to visit for a day out, per­haps in ad­di­tion to go­ing to Pick­er­ing or the coast with­out be­ing seen as purely an­other place for peo­ple to visit char­ity shops?

In the news over the past decade has been the long-run­ning story of the his­toric town cen­tre live­stock mar­ket. At one time it was a battle with par­ties en­trenched but for most that’s pretty much in the past now and it ap­pears many are now look­ing for­ward to its im­mi­nent move to Old Mal­ton, near to Eden Camp, which was ap­proved last year with a view to a new agribusi­ness cen­tre, in­clud­ing a new live­stock mar­ket open­ing as soon as pos­si­ble.

There are those in the town who see the pro­posed move as a loss to the town’s char­ac­ter and her­itage but there are those in the al­ter­nate camp who be­lieve it will al­low the town’s re­tail propo­si­tion to ex­pand and of­fer greater choice.

What can­not be de­nied though is the friendly at­mos­phere of the town par­tic­u­larly around its large mar­ket place with St Michael’s Church stand­ing proudly in its cen­tre and its lit­tle al­ley­way of in­de­pen­dent shops called The Sham­bles that presently con­nects the mar­ket place area with the live­stock mar­ket.

There are also a host of other shops, pubs, cafés and tea­rooms all around the square. Where those in­volved with the town have scored heav­ily in at­tract­ing day trip­pers to the town in re­cent years is quite pos­si­bly a lit­tle les­son in brand­ing for oth­ers. They looked at one of their core strengths.

It is a mar­ket town first and fore­most, some­where where peo­ple like com­ing to look around stalls and buy food. The Satur­day mar­ket had al­ways been well at­tended. So they de­cided to go a lit­tle fur­ther.

The brand­ing started a few years ago to get into our brains that Mal­ton is about lov­ing food with lots of Food Lovers signs, no­tably near the A64. To­day there is a Mal­ton Food Mar­ket ev­ery month and in May there will once again be the re­turn of what is now re­garded as one of the UK’s best food fes­ti­vals when the Mal­ton Food Lovers Fes­ti­val takes place.

Of course it helps that TV chef James Martin has had such a con­nec­tion with the Tal­bot Ho­tel and Restau­rant in re­cent times. James has re­cently stepped down from his role as ex­ec­u­tive chef but The Tal­bot’s direc­tor and owner Tom Nay­lorLey­land has gone on record as say­ing his

GUEST AP­PEAR­ANCE: Levi Roots will be at the Mal­ton Food Lovers Fes­ti­val.

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