The opening day of the new weekly market taking place in Fore Street on March 27th was a fantastic event. After the initial panic about how to organise vehicles and set-up into a relatively small space, for what is already one of Wiltshire’s largest open air markets, traders settled down and the crowds started to arrive.
Between 10am-11am 1400 people walked through Fore Street, a figure that is 5x that on a non-market day. Amongst the first to arrive was Mayor John Knight and President of the Chamber of Commerce David Baker, who toured the stalls meeting traders and sampling their wares, including those at Dean’s Hog Roast (pictured below).
Wiltshire Council had done a fine job in organising the event in partnership with the Town Team and Fore Street was full of variety and interest with around 15 stalls organised by the Council. There was national interest in the new market too and Roger Mills from The Market Trader magazine was there to do a write-up, which we shall be featuring in our news section soon. A subsequent chat with Roger the following week was fantastic news when he told us that people will think we have paid him for his write-up, so impressed was he with the work Wiltshire Council and the Town Team had put into it.
The Communities Market under the umbrellas paid for out of the Town Team Partners funding as part of our Portas Pilot bid held a total of 12 traders on the day and we are hoping to grown this side of the market in the coming months. Although it was a blisteringly cold day our traditional bakers Taylors nearly sold out on the day and Chris Lugg with his impressive olive stall was happy with the tun out.
The Town Team had also invited local businesses to trade on the market to widen their exposure and amongst those taking up the offer have been Pilgrims Bazaar from St Georges Works, selling a range of Body, Mind and Spirit books as well as Emma Coffield, previously of Crafty Creations. Subsequently a team of cooks from The Polebarn Hotel have been making cakes to raise money for the London Moon Walk, a cancer charity and have done a roaring trade.
If anyone is interested in having a stall on the Community Market you can fill out our online application form here.
Photos courtesy of John Le Brocq of DBS Films