New leisure zone planned for Doncaster Wool Market

Plans to transform part of Doncaster’s Wool Market into a new leisure zone and games area have been unveiled today (Wednesday 10 November).

The new active leisure offer will further enhance the vibrancy of the Wool Market which has benefited from extensive work over the years to reinvigorate the venue into a popular place for people to socialise, eat and enjoy events and entertainment.  

The plans will transform the right-hand side of the Wool Market into a new ‘zone’ which will include: Duckpin Bowling; Dart Lanes; Shuffleboard; reception/ticket zone for entertainment area; and traditional arcade games.

Retail traders located in the Wool Market have been consulted on the plans and have accepted offers to move into the Corn Exchange which is soon to see regeneration as part of the Levelling Up bid that we have recently been awarded.

Councillor Phil Cole, Cabinet Member for Finance and Trading Services, said: “The Wool Market is a venue that has changed with the times and is a popular location for people to meet, socialise and enjoy its vibrant atmosphere. We are creating a modern destination for families to eat, relax and enjoy alongside shopping in the wider market and town centre.

“Doncaster Market is special, with the original market charter being granted in 1193 by King Richard I, but the world of retail has been changing over the last few years with the rise of supermarkets and online retail which has only increased with the pandemic, that is why we must adapt our markets to ensure they survive and provide a mixed and diverse offering across the markets. We are committed to keep improving its offer for residents and visitors.

“We have brilliant market traders, selling top class produce. We are incredibly proud of our markets and committed to supporting them as we bounce back from the pandemic.

“With our partners, Market Asset Management Doncaster Ltd (MAM), we are keen to reinvigorate our markets to reflect the changing needs of the customers and support our local traders and retailers to thrive.”

MAM have been working with the council to solidify a number of development plans across the markets estates to increase and diversify the offer leading to increased visitor numbers creating a vibrant buzz in the area for visitors.

Hayden Ferriby, Commercial Director at MAM, said: “We’re really excited about bringing a new entertainment venue to Doncaster, the Duckpin Bowling being only the second in the country.

“Visitors nowadays want and expect much more than just retail, or food, or leisure activities on their own. They want to visit unique destinations that give them an experience to remember and somewhere they want to visit again.

“Offering sport and games will attract new customers and visitors and encourage people to stay longer in the market so they can take advantage of the services offered by our traders and grab a bite to eat and drink.”

MAM’s vision for the markets is part of the bigger plan for the town as outlined in the Town Centre Masterplan.