28th November 2011, A Salford Star Exclusive
THE END IS NIGH FOR SALFORD PRECINCT’S FLEA AND CAR BOOT MARKETS
Salford’s bustling Thursday flea market and Sunday car boot market are to close as part of the redevelopment of Salford Shopping City by owners, Salford Estates. It appears to be an open secret amongst stall holders that the markets will close after Christmas, although the Precinct management won’t be drawn on a date.
The closure of the markets has led to an online petition and anger amongst both traders and the public.
It’s Thursday afternoon and the second hand flea market at Salford Precinct is bustling with people raking through stalls, looking for a bargain. There are plenty to be had. For a few quid you can pick up old cassette players, designer clothes, top toys…there’s even a bloke selling tyres and another with a huge 1841 Bible up for grabs…
Anyone searching for Salford’s soul would do well to start here. Both traders and punters have been coming here for years, some since it began over two decades ago. The market has got a character of its own, one of the last places where old Salford doesn’t fear to tread as the sterilised, regenerationalised, glass fronted future attempts to wipe it out.
MediaCityUK has almost become a curse on Salford, as everything within a couple of miles radius gets bulldozed and (sometimes) re-built, with Ordsall and Langworthyalready `treated’. And Pendleton, with its PFI project and the Precinct at its core, next in line.
In the summer the (in)famous Flat Iron pub on the market corner was closed and flattened with indecent haste (see here). And two weeks ago planning permission was granted for the modernisation of Salford Precinct (see here) which will see the site of the current outdoor market replaced with a car park and a retail unit.
Traders who run stalls on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, and those who trade in the current indoor market, will be re-housed in a glossy new purpose built Market Hall. But there’s nowhere in the plans for the Thursday and Sunday car boot and flea markets to go. It’s now an open secret amongst traders that the markets will close, possibly as soon as the second week in January.
“I’ve heard that the bulldozers are moving in during January, and I spoke to the market manager and said `Realistically there isn’t going to be any room for us’ and he said,`Realistically, no’; but officially we’ve been told nothing” says Deborah Hall who has been selling second hand and vintage clothing here for over twenty years.
“A lot of the customers don’t know about the closure either” she adds “I think it’s disgraceful. You ask anyone in Salford and they will tell you, the market is the heart of Salford. And they’re ripping the heart out of it to make it bland and the same as everywhere else. It’s not the new market that people are bothered about, it’s this. This is something different. Here, it’s not all the same shops like in every town now but they don’t care about that.”
Read the full article HERE
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