Not-for-profit charity group Diamond Valley Community Support (DVCS) will take over the operation of the Hurstbridge Farmers’ Market (HFM) from December 2018.
DVCS submitted a successful application to run the market after Council instigated an expression of interest process. Council has run the market since its inception in 2009.
Mayor and Bunjil Ward councillor Karen Egan said the three-year contract would benefit Council and the community.
“While the Hurstbridge Farmers’ Market is a much-loved community asset that delivers economic, environmental and social benefits to the Hurstbridge township, we recognise that an external operator can increase the quality and patronage of the market,” Cr Egan said.
“DVCS has successfully run the Kingsbury Drive Community Market for almost 40 years and will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to operating the HFM.
“Council will provide financial support to DVCS for the next three years and not only will this arrangement result in significant cost savings for Council, but we expect to see the market thrive under the new management arrangement.”
DVCS is an independent organisation that provides free information, support and referral services to people living in Nillumbik and Banyule.
DVCS Executive Officer Judy Thompson said her organisation was looking forward to working with key market stakeholders to help grow and develop the market.
“All profits from the market will be directed into support programs and emergency relief for local families in need,” Ms Thompson said.
The group is committed to continuing the market’s support of various local organisations, including the CFA, preschools and sporting clubs through gold coin donations, sausage sizzles and information stalls.
DVCS will take the reins on 2 December, with a vision to reinvigorate the HFM and turn it into a ‘destination market’ to attract visitors from far and wide.
The annual twilight market will be held on Friday 21 December.