Established vendors fear closure of historical market

Kingsland Waste market. Pic: Michael Rank

Kingsland Waste market. Pic: Michael Rank

Dalston’s Kingsland Waste general goods market could be set to close after Loving Dalston
revealed a potential plan to shut down the market and revamp it with new vendors and marked price items.

The market has seen a decline in vendors in recent weeks and vendors have been told that their licenses will not be renewed.

Jackie Morris pays for two pitches at Kingsland Waste. She said: “We never got to speak about this. We got a letter to renew our licenses in September, then in October we got another one telling us our licenses will not be renewed.”

“We pay a lot for the privilege of trading in Hackney, while all we get for it is more rules and regulations, especially in the recent months. The changes to rules and prices have been so drastic [that] lots of the other traders gave up. We used to have a full street of about 30 people, we now count five vendors with temporary licenses and two with permanent.”

“We do understand that times move on, but we don’t understand why we cannot be included in the change. The council wants our items priced and our market refreshed like the Chatsworth and Broadway markets, which are hip and like farmer’s markets. However the people who live in the area don’t like those markets, they like ours and they want it left how it is.”

Bashir has been trading from Kingsland Waste for 18 years. Morris told ELL that he couldn’t get his license renewed after switching to a temporary contract. She said: “Everybody changed their licenses to temporary not knowing they will be kicked out. The two markets the council proposed to us [as alternative sites] we don’t want to be in, as they do not sell the same goods as we do. Also the council has started denying claims [of having] space in those markets. We have nowhere to go.”

A Hackney Council spokesperson told ELL: “Kingsland Market is not closing. The council is currently refreshing its markets strategy that will outline its approach to how all Hackney markets will be successfully maintained and managed over the next five years. Temporary market licenses are not being renewed for Kingsland Market – however, there will be no change to any of the permanent licenses.”

ELL interviewed residents in the area about how they would feel if the market were to close and what they would do without it.

Isabella, a student living in the area said: “I moved to Dalston Junction in 2012. While I don’t go to the market often, I’ve [gone] enough to know how good of a place it is to buy furniture. It’s like Dalston’s special weekly farmer’s market, but instead of food you can buy couches and tables for a really good price.”

Sam, a Dalston native since 1995, said: “I’m very nostalgic when I think about the market’s closure, even if they re-open it, it won’t be the same thing. In the 90’s this street was booming with vendors and pitches every Saturday, and you could get absolutely any piece of furniture you desired. Many of the tables and chairs I use in my home have been bought from this market, it was a friendly place to chat and find archive furniture. I’m really sad to see it go.”

Another Dalston native, Sue said: “We were told by our vendors that the council wants prices to be marked on each item. How can the items be priced if the point of the market is to bargain? Neither the vendors want to put prices on their items, nor do we want to pay full price for them. It takes away everything Kingsland Waste stood for so many years.”

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