"No Longer Justified"
Tenants Disagree With Corporation
The application of the corporation to close Sunderland's old market permanently was looked into by Mr. A. N. C. Shelly, Ministry of Health inspector, on Monday.
An application to close the market was refused ten years ago by the Ministry of Health because it was considered still to be fulfilling its purpose. The present application is being opposed by market tenants on similar grounds.
The town clerk claimed that to-day there were 160 shops available in the market, hut only 65 were let, and only 6 were occupied by sellers of food. The rest were used by dealers in secondhand clothes, boots. furniture, metal, books, etc., and roundabouts were also conducted.
Practically no trade was done in the market except on a Saturday, and the corporation contended that the market was not now being used for legitimate market purposes.
"The market is not a fit place, from a public health point of view, to be used for the purpose of selling articles for consumption by the people.
"There are no tnodern sanitary facilities which we now require everyone to provide in connection with shops. The shops are dark and there is no through ventilation. They are most terrible places."
Breeding of Rata
The town clerk added that it would cost at least £15,000 to repair the entire market premises and that in view of his previous remarks such expenditure was not justified.
Measures that were being taken in that district to relieve over-crowding ensured that 5,000 people would be removed to other parts of the town where the market would be of little use to them.
Another member of the town council said that the education committee had complained that rats were gaining access to the school in James William Street and that they came from the market.
The average annual loss sustained by the town since 1911 was given by the borough treasurer as £24. He estimated that the loss next year would be in the region of £500. Speaking for the tenants, Mr. C. C. Carlton submitted that the reasons given for closing the market were not sufficient to call for such a step and that little change had taken place in the last 40 years regarding the number of people who shopped there.
The ministry's decision will be given at a later date.