KNUTSFORD Market Hall traders are calling on the town council to tackle issues with the floor and ceiling at the hall.

Dan Holland from Tatton Photography, which is based at the market hall, attended Monday’s town council meeting to raise the problems on behalf of the traders.

He said the traders had previously put a request to the council for action on the issues.

“Unfortunately it did not get approved, so we are here today to see if we can try once more,” he said.

“We feel as traders in Knutsford Market Hall that the floor is unsightly, and it’s getting to the point where it is now dangerous and unsanitary.

“We would like the floor to be replaced to bring it up to the standards of a building that represents not only the traders and the council but also the town of Knutsford too.”

He added that extensive work was needed to replace old ceiling tiles in the market hall.

“This once again looks unsightly, and we are sure it is not sanitary,” he said.

“We feel the best course of action to be to replace the old tiles for new.”

Councillors agreed to amend a resolution from January to postpone non-essential works to the council's buildings until at least the 2020/21 civic year, apart from approved works to 60 King Street and works to the Cemetery Chapel.

The intention of the resolution was to postpone the redevelopment of the Market Hall, works to the council offices following transfer and

works to create commercial spaces in the public toilets.

The amended wording will allow necessary repairs and maintenance to council buildings.

A report by town clerk Adam Keppel-Green said: “In discussion with councillors Hamilton, Coan and Nicholson, the decoration to the ladies toilets at the council offices was noted as being something visitors and staff had commented on, and it was noted the room has no heating, which staff have noted leaves it particularly uncomfortable in winter.”

In interpreting the wording of the January resolution, Adam said he considered essential works were those necessary on health and safety grounds or required not to prevent the operation of an asset, and considered redecoration was prohibited by the resolution.

He added: “Similarly, the Market Hall traders have been requesting redecoration to the front of the Market Hall and the replacement of water-stained ceiling tiles, which has been refused under this resolution.”

Cllr Stewart Gardiner said he had requested a pause on future development projects, but it would be ‘remiss’ of the council not to provide council staff with suitable toilets, and he noted the concerns of the market traders.

“If the roof [of the market hall] or the floor is damaged then it would be unsafe and we would have a bigger headache because we have clearly got a building that is not fit for purpose,” he said.

Councillors backed his proposal to change the January resolution to allow repairs and maintenance to council buildings where necessary.

Cllr Christopher Gray said the resolution had not been intended to stop maintenance work.