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Words: Melanie Burton
Photography: Mick Fox
Featured in the January 2019 issue

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The north Lincolnshire town has a colourful history of markets and fairs and today is a thriving market town – thanks not only to the positive attitude of the traders and business owners themselves but also to the community as a whole, writes Melanie Burton.

Throughout the year there are a number of events taking place to bring people into the town and onto the streets and they have a wide range of cafes, eateries and hostelries to choose from too. Couple that with the myriad of courts and yards leading off Wrawby Street and the Market Place and its specialist shops centred mainly in the pedestrianised area, and the town has much to offer shoppers and tourists alike.

Brigg hosts a number of markets such as its weekly Thursday and Saturday markets, with a wide range of traditional stalls, selling goods ranging from fruit and vegetables to fresh flowers, shrubs and plants, fish and cheese, clothing and footwear, household goods, bric a brac and greetings cards.

In addition, there is a highly popular and well attended Thursday weekly auction, known as Stennetts Market, which is held on Station Road in Brigg, where traders, farmers, and the general public come to buy all manner of goods, including fresh produce, poultry and game.

The Farmers’ Market started in Brigg in 2000 and it has gone from strength to strength. Held on the fourth Saturday of the month, and located in the town centre, it sells locally-grown produce direct from the supplier, such as vegetables, meat, poultry (including ostrich), eggs, cheese, ice cream and preserves.

Brigg also hosts two Festive Markets or Fairs – there is a Summer Fair in June organised by Brigg and District Lions, and the Christmas Fair held in December.

Much work is going on behind the scenes to promote the tourism industry in Brigg and an initiative is being launched aimed at boosting that sector even further. Visit North Lincolnshire is looking for tourism businesses across the area to come together and work in partnership to make North Lincolnshire the best place to visit.

It is in the throes of setting up a Tourism Partnership to create a thriving visitor economy, enhance the visitor experience and maximise tourist numbers, increasing spend and the number of overnight stays in the area.

Prior to launching the partnership, the Visit North Lincolnshire team hosted an engagement event to give businesses the chance to discover more about the proposed Tourism Partnership and have a say on how it develops.

The event looked at how to create better relationships, develop tools and intelligence for managing and growing the visitor economy, and develop a North Lincolnshire brand.

North Lincolnshire Council Cabinet member responsible for tourism, Councillor Elaine Marper said: “The Tourism Partnership will support the visitor sector in North Lincolnshire and help local businesses reach their full potential.

“The engagement event was the chance for businesses of all different types across the area to get involved prior to the launch of the Partnership.”

Sally Walker, owner of the Pink Pig Farm in Holme, threw her support behind the partnership idea.

“The obvious benefit of a tourism partnership scheme is being able to promote North Lincolnshire together – both the council and independent businesses – as a tourist destination, in addition to the creation of a network of like-minded businesses that can come together to drive more people to our attractions and overnight accommodation,” she said.

Brigg has a colourful history and much has been done to enhance the visitor experience by improving the town’s appearance.

Its Heritage Centre opened to the public in June 2012 with one gallery that charted the history of the Ancholme Valley from the prehistoric through to medieval periods.

Gallery Two, which takes the visitor on a whistle stop tour from the Tudors through to the present day, opened in November 2014, along with a Costume Gallery, Period Room and two large Education Rooms used for temporary exhibitions, craft sessions and talks.

In April 2014 North Lincolnshire Council handed over the responsibility of financing and running Brigg Heritage Centre to the Ancholme Valley Heritage Trust, and to try and meet this need the Buttercross Meeting Room was added to the portfolio.

The town is also justifiably proud of the Angel Suite, which was officially opened in 1995 following the final phase of renovations to the old Angel Hotel.

The main function of the building is to provide Brigg with a community venue that lends itself to any type of function, but it is also a spectacular room for that special event or celebration.

There is a large hall on the upper floor (still known as the ballroom from its days as the Angel Hotel Ballroom) and a mid-sized lounge/meeting room on the lower floor. The building is fully accessible for people who have mobility problems with a lift that can accommodate a wheelchair to serve all levels.

Brigg in Bloom worked hard throughout 2018 to brighten up Brigg with flower arrangements at various locations in the town to enhance the visitor attraction of the area.

Flower tubs, planters and baskets were installed across Brigg town centre, including on and near the County Bridge and within the Market Place as well as along the Barnard Avenue railings beside the A18.

All the hard work over the long hot summer paid off – Brigg won a Bronze award in the Small Town Category in the regional Britain in Bloom competition.

The economy of Brigg is substantially retail and service-based, in line with its traditional position as a market town, and the fact that it acts as a service centre for the surrounding rural area.

The main shopping street is Wrawby Street, although shops are present throughout much of the old town.

Many of the businesses are independent, retaining the character of the traditional high street, although some chain retailers, namely Tesco, Lidl, Wilko and Boyes have large stores in the town.

The old town is centred on the marketplace and the adjoining streets of Bridge Street, Wrawby Street, and Bigby Street.

The marketplace and Wrawby Street, where much of the town’s retail is located, were pedestrianised in the early 1990s.

A significant number of buildings in the town centre date from the late 1700s or early 1800s and are listed, with the old town as a whole designated a Conservation Area.

The marketplace is dominated by the Buttercross and The Angel, a former coaching inn with an early mock Tudor façade, which is now home to Brigg Town Council and various North Lincolnshire Council services.

Another former coaching inn, The Exchange, stands in Bigby Street, opposite the former manor house of the Elwes family.

PRE-OWNED PRESTIGE
Originally set up as a father and son-in-law partnership, with 70 years’ combined experience and a shared love of beautiful cars, Family Autos Sports and Prestige have built an excellent reputation in North Lincolnshire and beyond for their customer focus and quality vehicles.

Martin Hickey, managing director, established the business with his late father-in-law and continues with their founding values of specialising in selling a wide range of prestige marque used cars at competitive prices.

In their Brigg showroom you’ll find an impressive array of prestigious brands from Range Rover and Mercedes-Benz to Aston Martin, Jaguar, Porsche, Lamborghini and more. Each of the vehicles is personally sourced and selected to ensure customers always receive a high quality, competitively priced car. There is a nationwide delivery service so distance is no object.

“The cars that we sell – it’s the main focus of Family Autos Sports and Prestige,” said Martin. “We also buy vehicles and can offer very competitive prices, typically paying more than major dealers. With immediate payment and free collection, we give instant quotations over the phone. Unlike other companies, the price we quote is the price we pay. So for anyone thinking of trading in their car or wanting a hassle-free sale, we can buy vehicles with same day cleared funds.”

Josh Goodyear is Family Autos’ sales executive and he is always on hand to deal with any enquiries.

“Our friendly, reliable and honest approach has earned us thousands of satisfied customers,” said Josh, “and we are proud to hold a five star average customer rating on autotrader.co.uk – the UK’s largest car buying site – which is the highest rating in North Lincolnshire.”

Whether you’re looking for something sporty or a more robust 4x4, get in touch and find out for yourself why Family Autos Sports and Prestige are the top-rated dealership in the area.

Family Autos Sports and Prestige, Atherton Way, Brigg. DN20 8AR, Tel: 01652 655010,
www.familyautos.co.uk

BRIGG GYM
Getting fit is often one of the top New Year resolutions that people make and residents in Brigg have a bigger incentive than most to stick to theirs this year.

North Lincolnshire Council has invested £45,000 in refurbishing the gym equipment at Ancholme Leisure Centre to ensure gym-goers have access to top class equipment.

This investment follows a consultation with customers which identified that gym users would like different types of equipment to help them with their exercise.

The new state-of-the-art gym equipment being installed includes five new cross-trainers which help tone muscles and strengthen the heart, two recumbent cycles which are gentle on joints and support the lower back and three upright cycles which use the same muscles as outdoor cycling.

There will also be an arm cycle which is a great way to work your chest, shoulders, back, arms and core muscles, and for people with reduced mobility, a multi-use training system that can be used for group classes and a squat rack which is customisable equipment that two people can use at the same time.

The treadmills will be replaced at a later date with interactive treadmills that allow people to run, jog or walk in different countries or link in with other people logged onto the system. 

Councillor David Rose, Cabinet member for Children, Families, Learning and Leisure, said: “We are investing in the gym at Ancholme Leisure Centre to ensure it is fit for purpose and our customers have access to modern equipment that meets their needs.

“Keeping active is really important for your health and wellbeing and has lots of benefits. It is important that our leisure centres provide the best possible service and up-to-date equipment, which is why we are fully committed to making improvements.

BRIGG IS BEST
Creating and maintaining an attractive and diverse town centre in Brigg has been one of the achievements of Brigg Town Centre Partnership. Their website champions the town as www.briggisbest.co.uk and walking through the streets you will certainly notice that this is a market town which has very few empty shops and a thriving variety of independent retailers and service providers.

“The Partnership was formed so that local, independent business people could come together to plan a strategy which would work well for them and the community,” said Deb Dunderdale, chairwoman of the group. “We have the busy Market Days every Thursday and Saturday plus an award-winning Farmers’ Market on the fourth Saturday of each month but it is the wide variety of independent, unique shops which make the town so attractive for locals and visitors.”

The Partnership has launched many innovative campaigns to promote Brigg including a wide programme of events throughout the year, liaison with train operators to encourage day visitors and effective online and digital channels.

“‘Shop Local’ has been one of our core messages since we formed in 2011, but the vibrancy of the town is a combination of the shopping offer, fine quality cafes and restaurants, Brigg as an attractive place to work and run a business and the appeal of a warm and friendly welcome.”

Visitors arriving by car also benefit from two hours’ free parking Monday to Friday and car parks are free all day Saturday.

“We work to ensure that spending time in Brigg, whether for shopping, leisure or work is a thoroughly enjoyable and memorable experience which will leave you wanting to return again soon.”

www.briggisbest.co.uk

J NAYLOR – HERE TO SERVE THE COMMUNITY
When families have lost a loved one, they need the support of a funeral director in the heart of their community who can fulfil their wishes with utmost care and to the highest standards.

J Naylor Funeral Directors are a privately owned, independent company with branches in Brigg and Scunthorpe with more than thirty years’ experience within these North Lincolnshire towns and the surrounding villages.

Their dedicated and experienced team are professional and considerate every step of the way, supporting families to make the right choices. From planning of the funeral, to the funeral itself, there is expertise and support with online and printed obituaries, burial arrangements, floral tributes and grave marking. There are plans to help with pre-paid funerals and you can be assured that J Naylor Funeral Directors are on hand 24 hours and 365 days a year to be there when there is a loss in your family.

J Naylor Funeral Directors, 15 Bigby Street, Brigg, DN20 8EJ, Tel: 01652 650520, www.jnaylor-funerals.co.uk

WALLHEAD’S OUTFITTERS FOR QUALITY COUNTRY WEAR
Founded in 1897 by James Blackburn Wallhead, Wallhead’s Menswear remains a family business, and is run today by fourth-generation Richard Wallhead. The shop specialises in men’s and ladies’ clothing from well-known brands such as Schoffel, Barbour and Puffon.

Wallhead’s caters for formal, casual and country wear. Quality shooting clothing by German brand Schoffel is available, including tweed breeks and waistcoats, caps to match and five top-class Gore-Tex and Venturi shooting coats all fully waterproof and machine washable. Fantastic Schoffel ski jackets for men and ladies are also stocked.

Call into the shop and enjoy personal attention and good old-fashioned customer service. Wallhead’s welcomes customers who regularly drive over 200 miles to visit the shop.

Wallhead’s Menswear Est 1897, 52 Wrawby Street, Brigg.

UK OPTICIAN AWARD FINALIST & RUNNER-UP – DR JANJUA
In 2017 director and senior optometrist at O’Brien’s Opticians, Sheeraz Janjua, was awarded the degree of Doctor of Optometry from Aston University for his research in Dry eye syndrome. Dr Janjua is one of only 25 optometrists in the UK with this qualification. In 2018 he was shortlisted for the prestigious award of Optometrist of the Year 2018. He came runner-up in this category out of 14,000 optometrists in the UK. This is a great achievement for the team at O’Brien’s Opticians in the heart of Brigg.

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