FOUR youngsters have secured their spots at the regional finals of the Young Trader of the Year Awards following a local competition.

A total of 16 young traders competed in the local heats at Barnsley Market on May 11, in a bid to celebrate the next generation of market traders across the country.

First place and champion of the Barnsley heats was awarded to Imogen Johnson, owner of Petal and Forge.

She said: “I feel so proud and honoured to be awarded this title.

“Running a small business can be a rollercoaster and knowing all the hard work has paid off makes it worthwhile.

“Barnsley Market has been such a big part of our growth, so to be recognised there among other such talented young traders is a huge compliment and means so much to me.

“I look forward to what the future holds, it would be a dream to eventually have my own shop where I can share more of my creations and work on my business full time.”

In second place was Sasha Watson from Tasty Treats by Sash, third play was Chris Byard and fourth place was Maddison Sellors.

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Coun Robin Franklin, cabinet spokesperson for regeneration and culture at Barnsley Council, said: “We are very proud of our young traders, who have shown their skills and passion for their products at the Barnsley heats.

“Barnsley Market is a vital part of our town centre regeneration, and we are keen to support and encourage new traders to join our vibrant market community.

“We hope that the regional finals will be a fantastic opportunity for our young traders to showcase their businesses and network with other traders from across the region.”

The four winners will compete in the regional finals on August 4 in Skipton.