Connect Derby takes over management of Derby Market Hall

Published: 10 December 2020

Derby Market Hall

Derby’s Grade II Listed Victorian Market Hall is currently undergoing a multimillion-pound regeneration programme.

Connect Derby, the city’s primary managed workspace provider, has taken on temporary management of Derby’s Market Hall – during an unprecedented time for the historic building.

Connect Derby specialises in managing multi tenanted buildings where tenants operate and deliver commercial services. It has been appointed by Derby City Council to assist Market Hall traders during a period of considerable disruption, which has included the Covid-19 pandemic and the wider transformation project that is currently underway.

Since its reopening in July following the first national lockdown, Market Hall traders have been supported with their day to day operations by Ann Bhatti, head of Connect Derby, and her management team.

As part of their new management role, the Connect Derby team have been responsible for reviewing existing risk assessments, policies, and procedures in response to the challenges of creating a COVID-safe environment.

Connect Derby have continued to upskill and train Market Hall staff in key service areas and share good practice between these two business-facing Council services.

They have also offered business support meetings to traders, with free 30-minute sessions to answer queries and provide help and support with any grants and resources available from Government in response to the financial and economic challenges the pandemic has wrought.

Derby’s Grade II Listed Victorian Market Hall is currently undergoing a multimillion-pound regeneration programme, which will see the building transformed into an attractive retail and leisure destination.

Work is already underway on the transformation, which will include traditional and themed markets, events, one-off or pop-up uses and small performances with a greater emphasis on food and drink to attract a wider range of businesses and visitors.

The Market Hall’s transformation project will require traders to decant early next year so essential works can take place and the process is being co-ordinated by Ann Bhatti and her team.

A variety of different options are being considered for the decant and workshop sessions are currently being staged to consult with existing traders about their needs.

Commenting on taking over the management of the Market Hall, Ann Bhatti, said:

We’ve really hit the ground running since taking on temporary management of the Market Hall and are helping and guiding traders through their next steps and their daily operations during what is a period of disruption for them.

As a managed workspace provider, we understand the importance of clear communication with tenants, which is why we’re consulting with traders on the decant process to make sure it runs as smoothly as possible.

The Market Hall is a unique building with a diverse range of traders, and we look forward to working with these businesses in the coming year.

Councillor Mick Barker, Cabinet Member for Governance and Licensing, added:

As a Councillor with ‘markets’ in my heart I am extremely pleased that Connect Derby has been able to bring its expertise to support traders and customers in a hugely difficult year.  This grand old building deserves our commitment and care.

Having faced Covid restrictions and the continued restoration of the building, we are all ‘singing from the same hymn sheet’ and I look forward to the day when Derby Market Hall becomes the prime asset of Derby it deserves to be.

Ann and members of the Connect Derby management team are currently based in the Market Hall on a rotational basis throughout the week.

 For further information about the Market Hall, email

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