ORGANISERS of Barnard Castle Country Market have announced it will not be possible to resume trading due to problems posed by Covid-19, and the decision has been made to formally close the market.

Held each week in the Parish Hall, it has been part of the wider Wednesday market in the town since June 1975 selling traditional crafts, jams and preserves, homemade cakes, biscuits and savouries.

A statement from the market said: “Teesdale is renowned for traditional skills in craft work and especially baking – the sumptuous chapel teas, food taken out to men in the hayfield and of course the weekly ‘baking day’ to replenish the larder. Many ladies from the Dale, and beyond, have been involved in the market over the years bringing jams and cakes made using traditional family recipes to sell. The popularity of the market was such that each week, for many years, there was a long queue of (usually) ladies waiting outside which began forming sometimes up to an hour before it opened. Crafts were always popular – particularly hand knitted socks and gloves in the cold weather. Handcrafted cards and unique pieces of jewellery added to a wide display of goods produced by the industrious ladies of Teesdale and the market was a showcase for skills which are now fast disappearing.

“The ladies of Barnard Castle Market would like to thank all their customers for their support and friendship. Especially those who visited regularly from places such as Sunderland, Stockton or even Hexham. It has been greatly appreciated. They would also like to thank the ladies who have been part of the Country Market over the past 45 years, for their hard work and dedication to the association. It hasn’t gone unnoticed.

“The Durham group of Country Markets has also decided to formally close both Sedgefield and Lanchester Markets.”