Town gets into shape

With a brand new leisure facility under construction and long standing businesses and venues continuing to attract visitors, Melanie Burton finds Market Rasen full of activity in the lead-up to the festive season.
Work is progressing on Market Rasen’s new state-of-the-art leisure centre, which is due to open to the public next year.

West Lindsey District Council and Everyone Active are investing more than £6.3m into the community facility, which once complete will house a multi-use fitness studio, a four-court sports hall, a 40-station gym, changing facilities and a meeting room/party hosting area.

Morgan Sindall Construction is working on the new centre located in Gainsborough Road, which will be set over two storeys and was designed by CPMG Architects.

Work officially started on site in May this year, when a special ceremony was held to mark the occasion. Since then significant ground works have been completed while the main building’s steel frame and staircase have also been installed.

The ground works are also underway for the all-weather 3G pitch, and the new footpath along Kilmore Lane is almost complete too.

Kerry O’Neill, contract manager for Everyone Active, said: “It’s exciting to see the steel frame and some of the structures going up on site, so we can begin to see the new Market Rasen Leisure Centre taking shape.

“We’re looking forward to progress continuing and seeing the new centre come to life, and to opening the facility for the local community next summer.”

The council has been aware of the lack of leisure provision in the town for a number of years, and that along with the high levels of obesity and hospital admissions for type 2 diabetes, highlight the importance of the investment.

Cllr Stephen Bunney, West Lindsey District Council ward councillor for Market Rasen, added: “It’s wonderful to see good progress on the leisure centre, which is a much-needed addition to the town.

“I look forward to seeing people of all ages from the local community enjoy the new facility when it opens next year.”

Christmas arrives in Market Rasen on Saturday 30th November, when the town hosts its annual festive lights switch-on and market in conjunction with the Mayor’s Charity Event.

During the day there will be a variety of stalls for visitors to browse in the Market Place while Father Christmas will also be in attendance to greet young guests and hear their special Christmas wishes.

A raft of local charities, organisations and community groups have also been invited to attend the market, which runs from 10am to 4pm, to help raise their profiles and awareness of the work they are doing in the area. They will be fundraising too, while several other stalls will raise money for the mayor’s charities.

Town clerk Faye Lambkin-Smith said the market promises festive fun for the whole family.

“We’ve got around 30 stalls available and they’re all fully booked, although there may be a few more on trestle tables too,” she said. “There’s going to be lots of different bits and pieces including a mix of crafts, charity stalls, food and catering as well as clothing among others – so it’s the perfect chance to start your Christmas shopping.

“We’ve also got a couple of local primary schools getting involved – they will be doing some singing and a big Christmas snow globe will be down here too!

“It’s just a lovely, festive event to help get everyone in the Christmas spirit.

“The lights are going to be officially switched on at 3.30pm and Father Christmas will also be here and in return for a small entrance fee, each child who visits his grotto will receive a gift.”

Market Rasen Racecourse, which is part of The Jockey Club, stages over 20 jump racing fixtures each year and is a leading conference and events centre in the East Midlands.

The venue is one of the friendliest places to watch jump racing, with events throughout the year. The beautiful track, in its lovely rural setting, is best known as a premier summer jumping racecourse. Top races include the Listed Summer Plate and Summer Hurdle, both run during the annual Ladies’ Day in mid-July. Visitors also enjoy the twice-a-year Jockey Club Live concerts at which the likes of Tom Jones and Madness have performed.

Market Rasen is a major business in the area and plays a big part in its community. It offers a range of enclosures on its feature racing days to suit every pocket and to ensure visitors enjoy their day. The family-friendly atmosphere, its stunning countryside views and exciting races make Market Rasen a great day out.

Families especially are well looked after, with a number of Family Fun days. At almost all meetings, accompanied under 18s are admitted free.

The racecourse attracts one of its largest attendances at its traditional Rand Farm Park Boxing Day At The Races. Thousands of people descend on the track with friends and family for a value-for-money sporting day out. Boxing Day racing is Lincolnshire’s ‘Big Christmas Day Out’ and is always a great chance to continue the festive feeling.

Market Rasen is home to probably the largest independent electrical retailer in the county. Peter Rhodes has been established since 1957 and is still owned by Joyce Rhodes, one of the original founders, and her son-in-law Roger Clark.

Two years ago the business relocated their kitchen centre and electrical shop into two new showrooms within their extensive warehouse on Oxford Street to create a one-stop shop for leading name electrical appliances and Rhodes Fitted Kitchens.

“Our large warehouse enables us to carry an extensive range of stock,” said Roger. “Major brands include Panasonic, Miele, AEG, Bosch, Finlux, Hotpoint, NEFF, Zanussi and Cannon.”

Whether you are shopping for a new television or a range of appliances for your home, Peter Rhodes have a comprehensive choice on display from white goods and small electrical appliances to OLED TVs. There is a large car park for shoppers and what is more, Peter Rhodes offer a free delivery service across the county.

The expert team at Peter Rhodes Fitted Kitchens are available to help with planning, designing and fitting your new kitchen. With a full range of built-in appliances your dream kitchen can be created firstly on screen and then in your home.

Skylark Homes is a small but expanding building company, with a reputation for quality. Phase 1 is now almost completed at Skylark Homes’ North View Farm development. The nine, beautifully designed homes are located on the village edge of Middle Rasen, grouped in a traditional farm setting.

The last two properties available for sale in the first phase are soon to be completed. The final three homes of the development will be built next year and include two bungalows. Future owners are always encouraged to make design changes if they wish, before their home is constructed.

The company will then build at Woodland Walk, along Willingham Road. This prestige development will complement Market Rasen Racecourse, as together they will showcase the entrance to the town. A number of the Skylark Homes team, including Blake Roberts, the construction director, live in Market Rasen and are delighted to be playing a part in shaping the future of their town. Tom Pickering, the company’s founder, is looking forward to the company making its contribution to Market Rasen’s development on this very prominent site: “Framed by lakeside views and with direct access to Willingham Woods, the setting and aspect will be fantastic. We are building 48 bungalows and houses at low density on the twelve-acre site. It’s a very exciting project.”

Skylark Homes also owns and runs its award-winning holiday homes business, Ashlin Farm Barns, close by its headquarters in Ashing Lane, Dunholme. With the fifty acres of Ashing Lane Nature Reserve on its doorstep, yet its closeness to all Lincoln has to offer, it is ideally situated as a holiday destination. Tom says guests seem to really enjoy the atmosphere of the family run enterprise.

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