by Henry James (August 2022)

WHEN Ormskirk’s former indoor market is transformed into a food and drink hall, it will be a venue to rival those in Liverpool city centre, say the people behind the project.

A food hall, as well as six kitchens, an “immersive” games loft, bar area, private hire space, retail outlets and live music space will be created as part of the project which is due to open in the autumn.

Spanning across two floors, the site will showcase vendors from the local area and is being brought to the town by Ormskirk residents and hospitality operators Simon and Fiona Beer.

Simon, whose EPIC brand has a “proven track record of operating successful businesses” in and around Liverpool city centre, said: “We’ve been dreaming about doing this for many years.

“We want to reimagine this historic space with a modern concept that can thrive while emulating the success of similar sites in other UK market towns.

“Having been left abandoned for many years, we want to bring this space back to life and to what it was so well known for locally - a market building.

“We’ll be keeping its original features, such as the iconic clock face, as well as some of the signage that has been here since day one.”

The project follows a six figure investment into the site on Moorgate, which was originally built back in 1903 as the home of Hesfords DIY & Gardening.

Up to 80 new jobs will be created for roles including the venue’s general manager.

Fiona added: “Many people in this area have to travel into Liverpool if they want food, drinks, and entertainment on this scale, but that will no longer be the case.

“Ormskirk Food & Drink Market will offer a taste of the city centre, and the restaurants and bars that it has within it, much closer to home.

“Our brand ethos is Eat, Meet and Play, so whether it’s family time, fun with friends, date nights or days out accompanied by your dog, this is a space for everyone to enjoy, all under one historic roof.”

Ormskirk Food & Drink Market is currently on the lookout for local traders to take up residency in the new space, from the more established restaurateurs to those up and coming in the food and drink industry.

Fiona said: “This is a real opportunity to showcase what the area has to offer, and we can’t wait to welcome everyone to see just what we have been working on for so long and to enjoy what Ormskirk Food & Drink Market is all about.”

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