Market trading

Our markets are a huge part of community life and take place weekly in Brandon, Bury St Edmunds, Haverhill, Newmarket and Mildenhall. There are great advantages of having a market stall in West Suffolk:

  • a safe market trading environment that meets health and safety requirements
  • casual pitches to test out your products
  • few overheads
  • opportunity to be part of a lively business community
  • opportunity to talk to customers directly
  • thriving and regular markets with strong community support

When are markets held?

Weekly markets are held in the following towns:

  • Brandon - Thursdays and Saturdays 9am to 12.30pm
  • Bury St Edmunds - Wednesdays and Saturdays 8am to 4pm
  • Clare - 3rd Saturday of the month 8.30am - 2.30pm
  • Haverhill - Fridays and Saturdays 8am to 4pm
  • Mildenhall - Friday 9am to 3pm
  • Newmarket - Tuesdays and Saturdays 9am to 3pm

What do I need to get a pitch?

Contact our markets team in the first instance to talk about your products and we will discuss what you need in order to trade. If there is a space for your stall, then you will need to complete a new market trader application form. You will also need to follow all of our rules and regulations.

I am a casual trader. What do I need to do?

You can trade for 12 weeks without a licence, after this you can apply to become a permanent trader.

You will also need to follow all the usual rules that apply to permanent market traders.

To trade on a casual basis please contact the markets team:

What are the rules and regulations?

To trade on our markets you will need to know, and follow, our rules and regulations. Some of the main considerations are:

  • you will need a licence if you are trading on a permanent basis
  • you will need insurance for your stall
  • you will need to comply with all relevant laws and regulations including child protection, right to work and health and safety laws
  • you will need to provide your own stall that is safe, clean and in good condition
  • you won't be able to pack up your stall if the weather is bad, as a trader you are committed to providing a service during market opening hours

What are the prices for pitches?

Prices are calculated on the basis of the size of your frontage. The price you pay per day is per foot of your frontage.

The footage rate varies between towns and some towns have more than one tier. There may also be additional charges for use of electricity or vehicles. These charges will be added to your daily price.

Location Market days Rates
Brandon Thursdays and Saturdays £0.90/ft
Bury St Edmunds Wednesdays and Saturdays

pitches in better locations pay higher rates

  • primary rate £2.56/ft
  • secondary rate £2.40/ft
  • tertiary rate £2.18/ft
  • electricity supply charge £2
  • vehicle site charge £10


Fridays and Saturdays
  • Friday rate £0.99/ft
  • Saturday rate £1.26/ft
  • electricity supply charge £2
  • vehicle site charge £10
Mildenhall Fridays £1.50/ft
Newmarket Tuesdays and  Saturdays £1.40/ft

What insurance do I need?

All traders must hold a third party public liability insurance policy. Currently the minimum value of a policy required by the councils is £5 million.

It is also the law that traders who are responsible for employees must hold an employer's liability insurance policy with a value of at least £5 million.

In order to trade, proof of your insurance cover must be provided to the Markets team, and you must display proof of your cover on your stall. You must also notify the Markets team about any changes to your insurance policy and you will be required to provide proof of insurance when you renew your licence.

Proof of membership of the National Market Trader Federation (NMTF) will also be accepted as proof of insurance, since NMTF members are insured up to £5 million for third party public liability, £5 million for products liability, and £10 million for employer's liability.

If you are young or new to market trading you may be eligible to apply for free short-term insurance cover provided under the council's public liability insurance policy. Please contact the markets team for full details.

What stalls are needed?

At all our markets we are always on the lookout for unique food stalls - in particular food from different cultures. For other kinds of stall, the balance varies for each market and over time. To find out what is needed at a particular market at the moment please get in touch with the markets team.

Do you have a waiting list for traders?

We operate a waiting list for certain markets and for certain goods, but it varies over time depending on the balance of each market. For up to date information on which goods and markets are subject to a waiting list please get in touch with the markets team.

Do market stalls pay business rates?

Individual market traders do not need to worry about paying business rates for their stalls. This is because the council pays the business rates for the market as a whole.

If you own a business property separately from your market stall then you may be liable for business rates. For more information on business rates visit the business rates section of our website.

What do I do with waste?

Waste collection is included in the cost of your licence. Waste is collected during the day, and we collect cardboard recycling separately from general waste.

How do I make a claim on insurance?

You are responsible for your own relationship with your insurance provider. We suggest that you contact your provider for information on how to make a claim.

If you are temporarily covered on a council insurance policy then contact Sharon Fairweather from the markets team in the first instance to discuss the details of an insurance claim.

Are there any health and safety rules?

In order to keep traders and members of the public safe, we require you to follow certain health and safety rules. You will be able to find the full rules in our rules and regulations document, which is linked above.

The main points are:

  • you are expected to keep your stall safe and clean
  • you are required to provide a full risk assessment
  • you must only drive vehicles during set-up and close-down hours, with hazard lights on and at a speed of no more than 5mph.

Are there any rules about trading food?

If you trade food products on a market you must comply with food licensing rules and hygiene standards, like all other food businesses. You are required to register your food business with our licensing and regulation team. For more information on food regulation and hygiene standards visit the food health and safety section of our website.

For further advice on food licensing or hygiene matters, please contact the food team. food&

Can charities have stalls?

Charities can take advantage of special prices for pitches at our markets. Charities must book stalls in advance with our markets team, as there are a limited number of charity pitches available at each market. Charities are limited to three pitches per year, unless there happens to be extra space available.

The special charity rates are:

  • Brandon, Mildenhall and Newmarket charity stalls can trade for free
  • Bury St Edmunds charity stalls special day rate £10
  • Haverhill charity stalls special day rate £5

Charities are allowed to sell goods, just like other kinds of market trader. It is important to remember that charity stalls need to follow our regulations. To do this charity stalls must:

  • be able to prove their charitable status on request
  • comply with food safety and hygiene rules
  • comply with our rules on leafleting and hawking
  • posses the required insurance

If you have any questions about bringing a charity stall to our markets, please get in touch with our markets team.