I’m currently training for a half marathon; on my first “long run” (and by long I mean 10k/6.2 miles) I was given a leaflet for a new Market that was taking place in Hackney. Since my errands for the day would take me near the Market I thought I would check it out.
Well Street Market takes place on the first Saturday of the Month. It features local, small and independent business, be it street food, fresh produce, fashion and craft & design.
Having walked through the market, it could be seen that it was still in its infancy; it’s not quite Broadway Market or Camden Market. However it seems that it is bourgeoning and it attracted a bit of a crowd. There was a sense of community and it was nice that the market wasn’t overrun with tourists (yet). I also appreciated that area was closed to traffic so that people could walk freely through the market without having to worry about oncoming traffic.
I didn’t spend too long at the Market; however I did make purchase a couple of items. The first item I bought was a birthday card by Sweet Design Studio, which is a business that produces cards and gifts. I was drawn by the multi-colour dress on the black female silhouette against the pale blue background. Inside the card is blank which means I can write as much or as little as I want to the recipient.
I also bought some cola from Square Root London. I first tried this cola in 2016 as Square Root London was vendor at the Hackney Half Marathon Runner Village. The business is based in Hackney and produces soft drinks. I remember the cola being refreshing on what a very hot day and I was not disappointed when I tried it again. It's not every day coca cola or pepsi.....
I did notice that food stalls dominated the market which made me wonder whether the market could possibly evolve into another Street Feast.
And while I did sense community as I browsed through the Market, I had a slight feeling of “New Community” i.e. the community that has come in following the aggressive gentrification of Inner East London. This is not the first time that Well Street had a market; I remember years ago that there was a daily market where traders would sell fruit and vegetables as well as clothing, which my mum and neighbours regularly visited and purchased from. It is not a negative, but the Street is actively changing with the old businesses being replaced with the inevitable coffee shop, café, bar and even refurbished pub. If the market is looking to be established for the long term and even seek more market days, I would hope that it would feature a variety of stalls that will attract both the Old and New communities and create bonds.
Street Markets have become an ideal way for hobbies, passions and ideas to grow into viable businesses; as mentioned in my previous post, Dumpling Shack is now looking for a more permanent venue to serve dumplings after having a very successful run at School Yard Market.
You can find out more about the Market on its website and Facebook page, whether you want to visit it or even trade at the market.