Entrepreneurial students battle it out for Market Challenge trophy

Some of Trafford College’s most business savvy students demonstrated their entrepreneurial expertise and battled it out to be crowned champions at this year’s annual Altrincham Market Challenge.

Some of Trafford College’s most business savvy students demonstrated their entrepreneurial expertise and battled it out to be crowned champions at this year’s annual Altrincham Market Challenge, which took place on Sunday 12 May.

 Enthusiastic students set up their stalls for the market’s busiest trading weekend which attracts hundreds of visitors every year. The budding entrepreneurs were tasked with the challenge of creating an idea for a stall with a small budget, with which they had to buy their products or service, and market and design their stall. Some of the initiatives included ‘Bee Happy’, a variety of Manchester Bee inspired goods, ‘Crafty Kids’, which offered craft activities for children, and ‘Positive Pampering’ which saw A Level students recycling goods that are good for mental health. 

A panel of judges including Trafford College Group Principal, Lesley Davies OBE, Neil Clough Series 9 finalist from the hit TV show, ‘The Apprentice’, and Susan Aldridge, CEO Altrincham & Sale Chamber of Commerce, were  tasked with the difficult decision of choosing winners in categories including, most profitable team (overall winner), best planning and research, and best dressed stall promotion.

Scooping the trophy and overall first prize for profitability for the second year running was the Sports department with their #Health stall which included products for wellbeing, along with further online support. Judges were impressed by the stall both visually and as a concept, and the team were thrilled with the £275 profit they made, with all proceeds being donated to charity.

Now in its 8th year, the Market Challenge forms part of the UK’s most successful celebration of markets, the Love Your Local Market (LYLM) campaign. The initiative has been so successful that it has now been embraced by 24 different countries worldwide.

As well as presenting students with an opportunity to develop team work, enterprise and employability skills, the event also supports the College’s initiative to create a new wave of entrepreneurs who will contribute to the continuing rejuvenation of Altrincham Town Centre.

Joan Scott, Director of Adult Learning, commented, “This year’s market stall concepts were phenomenal and the positive feedback we received from local shoppers in response to the student stalls was very well deserved. Our judges really struggled with choosing winners in all the categories because the standards this year were so very high.

“Students and staff love the chance to work in teams and they work very hard to merchandise and sell all their products, and ultimately win the trophy! Congratulations to this year’s overall winners and all our students on a wonderful event.”