Lichfield market stallholders will be hoping an appearance on a national TV programme will drive more people to buy local. Chef James Martin visited the city’s Famers’ Market as he sought out ingredients for his new series of Operation Hospital Food. The show – which airs next year – will see him transforming the menu at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Birmingham. “James wants to win the hearts and minds of hospital staff by introducing them to fresh ingredients from local suppliers,” explained series producer Lucy McLennan. “James has a huge passion for using local produce and for introducing this into the hospital’s menu, which will in turn help to support the local economy. “Visiting Lichfield Farmers’ Market allowed James to show the staff the variety of produce that can be found on their doorstep.” During his visit, James met a number of the local producers on Market Square. Rachel Clive, Lichfield City Council’s Markets Officer, added: “James Martin’s popularity was evident by the large amount of people who came into Lichfield on a weekday to see him, especially as publicity was limited and somewhat last minute before his visit. “I’m sure they were not disappointed as his alluring charm and ‘down to earth’ approach won the day. The increase in visitors was also a great boost for the monthly Farmers’ Market as they stayed to stroll around and buy from the 50 varied and interesting stalls selling delicious and enticing fresh local produce and excellent arts and crafts.” The Lichfield Farmers’ Market is held, on Market Square, on the first Thursday of the month (except January) with weekly General Markets on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.