Bedford has a rich tradition which has grown up around the towns market. Records show that the County Town of Bedford held a Market as early as the 11th Century. The town also boasts one of the oldest Market Charters in the country, granted by King Henry II in 1166. A Market has been held on St Paul’s Square since the 1500s, originally for the sale of livestock. Fast forward to today and Bedford has two Charter Market Days with the market standing from 8.00am to 4.00pm on Wednesdays and from 8.00am to 4.30pm on Saturdays with a home and garden market held on Fridays. In addition to these regular markets, a ‘Handmade in Bedford Market’ takes place on the second Saturday of the month, and a Farmers’ Market is held on the second and fourth Thursday of each month. The Council also operates a weekly Market on Thursdays in Kempston selling a wide range of goods including fruit, vegetables and gardening equipment.