Building work at Thirsk Market’s new out-of-town site is progressing well and on schedule for completion next autumn.

When building work is finished on the 5.5m project, the 20-acre site will offer an impressive range of facilities, including two separate auction rings.

The aim is to exceed the old market’s average of 500 finished cattle, 320 pigs and about 1000 sheep each week.

In addition a conference room and 12 business units are also being planned.

“The new centre must be one of the largest investments in agriculture over the last four or five years,” said market manager Iain Skinner.

“We are very excited about it.

It will be much more than just a place to buy and sell livestock.

We are hoping to attract livestock breed societies accountants, animal health companies and a whole range of other rural businesses.

Askham Bryan College, near York, is also planning to have an outreach centre on the site.”

Income from the rented units will help to secure the mart’s future, and the move will improve access for livestock transporters, added Mr Skinner.

The new site is right on the junction of the A19 and A168.

“It is nearer to the A1 than the existing mart and we expect our customers to find it much more convenient,” adds Mr Skinner.