OVERWHELMING support has been given to a new livestock market in Malton.

More than 230 people attended an open meeting to discuss the relocation of the market to a site on the outskirts of the town.

The meeting was hosted by the Livestock Market Company and attended by the developers, Marshalls, as well as members of the farming community.

Company chairman Pat Foxton said: “There was overwhelming support from more than 230 in farming community, which allows us to invite wider interests from our friends and families in Malton to share in the new market development, educational facilities and community meeting place for families to see and join in our Yorkshire farming heritage.”

Plans for a livestock market on the outskirts of Malton were first unveiled four years ago and received planning permission from Ryedale District Council in August 2014.

Work is now underway on the site, including the building of a new access road off the A169 near Eden Camp, and supporters of the scheme hope it will be finished by December.

Mr Foxton, said: “We would like to thank everyone who attended the meeting. There is every interest in seeing this marvellous investment become a reality.

“We have had not only keen interest from the farming world in Ryedale, but also those not involved in agriculture because it will be of enormous value to the whole of Ryedale and beyond.”

The future of Malton’s town centre livestock mart was thrown into doubt when the lease at its current site expired in October 2013.

Extensions were granted and a plan to create a new mart site was formed, including an agricultural business park.

The park and market complex has already been promised £2.1m from the Local Enterprise Partnership and the designation of Malton as a Food Enterprise Zone is expected to give the funding target a further boost.

The Fitzwilliam Malton Estate, which owns the present livestock market site in the town centre, has planning permission for a three-storey car park, a public square and retailing outlets on the land.

Forms expressing an interest in becoming a shareholder in the Livestock Market Company are available from Ann Welham at the market office on 01653 602815 or Pat Foxton on 07798 627815 or 01723 882234.