Wednesday 23 November 2011 Guardian.co.uk, Tony Naylor
Town markets offer honest food free of the usual lifestyle packaging and marketing flannel. Isn’t it time we food lovers really got behind them?
There’s a bloke on Bolton Market, Brian Gobin, who chops 120lb of vegetables a day. Sometimes double that in winter. He is preparing so-called “pot herbs”, a Bolton peculiarity – vegetable mixes sold by several stall holders for around £1 a lb – that locals use in soups, stews and other one-pot dishes.
They’re one of several reasons why the town’s market currently finds itself on the national stage. It is competing with East Oxford farmers’ and community market and London foodist hub Maltby Street for the title of Best Food Market at the 2011 Radio 4 Food & Farming Awards.
In Greater Manchester, Bolton Market is already well known for its produce (50% of its stalls sell food and drink), particularly its fish, and against the odds – or, specifically, the nearby Sainsbury’s, Morrison’s and Asda – it continues to thrive. Customer numbers are up, with over 2.5 million people visiting annually, it was crowned Britain’s Best Indoor Market Hall 2010, and its fans include Thomasina Miers and the Hairy Bikers.
Read the full story HERE
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