Princess Anne will visit Melton next month to officially open the new state-of-the art livestock building at the town’s cattle market.
Farmers got their first use of the impressive structure last May after it was built as the centrepiece of a £5.5 million investment in the site to replace delapidated cattle sheds.
The event involving the Princess Royal, on Wednesday March 7, also celebrates the collaborative work between Melton Council and market operator, Gillstream Markets, in making the market fit for purpose for decades to come.
Borough council leader, Councillor Joe Orson said: “We are delighted that The Princess Royal will be officially opening the new cattle building at Melton Mowbray Market.
“We are very proud of what we have achieved in redeveloping the market so to have a member of the royal family perform the opening is a real honour and will make it a truly memorable occasion.“
Hugh Brown, CEO of Gillstream Markets, said: “The Princess Royal’s visit to the market and opening of the new cattle building represents the culmination of a huge amount of work between the company, the council, the building team and the many other stakeholders.
“The benefits it will bring to the borough, the market and its farming customers, along with the wider communities we serve, will be seen for many years to come.”
The Princess Royal will be given a tour of the new building and have the opportunity to meet with Mayor of Melton, Councillor Tejpal Bains, civic leaders, members of the farming community and other key stakeholders.
Her Royal Highness will be invited to unveil a special plaque to commemorate the event and the official opening of the new building
Melton Mowbray Market is the largest town centre livestock market in the country and has been in existence for 1,000 years, predating the Domesday Book. The main market has been held on a Tuesday since at least 1324 when it was granted a charter by King Edward II.
As well as its normal weekly activities, the market also hosts many other sales and festivals, including the only national Native and Traditional Breeds Show and Sale in September.
The livestock market, alone, serves over 2,500 farming customers, with 350,000 visitors coming through the site annually.