Operators are being sought to run both Radcliffe Market and the soon to be built flexi-hall in Bury town centre.

Bury Council has published a glossy "invitation to express interest" brochure hailing an "outstanding opportunity" to run the two venues with the authority "sharing the profitability of the sites".

Radcliffe Market is due to be improved in the coming months as part of of a £20m regeneration project centred around a new town centre hub.

The hub will be built next to the market and contain a library, swimming pool along with leisure and community space.

The market is currently run by Radcliffe Community Benefit Society, a not for profit group.

In a statement, they said that the proposal had led to a "concerning time our traders, staff team and visitors".

They added that they wished to continue running the market and had expressed their interest in doing so to the council.

The expression of interest brochure states that the improved market would be "handed over" in autumn 2025, with the flexi-hall following in spring 2026.

The brochure said: “We would like our strategic partner on board during spring 2024 to help influence the final designs and to give sufficient time to launch in a well-prepared manner.

"The council is seeking an exceptional operator and will be looking to award leases and management agreements for the two sites.

“Lease lengths of 10 years plus would seem appropriate and the council would seek to share in the profitability of the sites.

"Ideally one operator would eventually tender for both sites, however single site tenders would also be considered.

“Bury’s Flexihall will be handed over in an exceptionally high-standard.

"A newly finished, serviced shell scheme including mechanical and electrical provision for events, food hall, conferencing etc.

“Radcliffe Market has been recently refurbished and the basement area will be white-boxed prior to handover and will be suitable for hospitality and functions.”

The document adds that the council will continue to operate Bury Market, with the successful operator working in close partnership with them.

The council said the successful operator would seek to "improve town-centre vibrancy and footfall" and that a "family-orientated evening economy is of paramount importance for both towns and you will be instrumental in its curation".

In its statement in response to the news, Radcliffe Community Benefit Society said: “We have come so far in our journey and we love seeing you down here week in and week out enjoying our community space.

“Your market may very well end up in the hands of an organisation that is no longer community focused, but who knows what the expectation is, and what the future may hold for Radcliffe Market without us.

"We have no intention of giving up our hard work or letting you guys down, of course we would like to stay and keep doing you proud, so we of course have expressed our interest.

“Over the coming weeks we will be holding meetings with our members and the wider community.

"We appreciate this is a concerning time for everyone, our traders our staff team and our visitors and all the organisations we support.”