Leeds Kirkgate Market is voted top of the shops

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Leeds’s Kirkgate Market is celebrating after being voted the best in the business.

The historic shopper’s paradise took the title of Britain’s favourite market at the Great British Market Awards.

Its win came after more than 100,000 votes were cast online during the run-up to the ceremony, held today in Birmingham.

Other markets that fared well in the awards included Hebden Bridge (best small outdoor), Huddersfield’s Alternative Market (best small speciality) and Rotherham Street Market (best large outdoor).

Presenting the prizes, High Street Minister Marcus Jones said: “Markets are a vital part of Britain’s bustling high streets.

“They are the test beds for entrepreneurs starting out in the trade and the heartbeat of communities across the country.

“I’d like to congratulate all of these winners on being named one of Britain’s best markets and wish them all the best for the future.”

Kirkgate Market is among the largest indoor markets in Europe and dates back to the 1850s.

It is currently undergoing a major refurbishment that will create a new covered daily market and a combined fresh food hall.

Coun Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member for regeneration, transport and planning, said: “Kirkgate is a fantastic market and one that many people in Leeds treasure.

“The market is full of characters that give the market its charm and atmosphere, and I am sure they are all delighted with this well-deserved result.

“The market is already a great location to visit for shopping as well as having historical significance and impressive architectural features, and once the refurbishment is complete later this year it will offer even more variety of produce and an even more impressive shopping experience.

“After being a runner-up in this competition two years running, it is fantastic news that Kirkgate has finally received the recognition it deserves nationally.”