WALTHAMSTOW: Market traders react to Morrisons bid

STALL holders at Walthamstow’s historic market have given a mixed reaction to the news that another supermarket wants to open in the area.

Morrisons announced this week that it intends to build a new superstore and 250 flats on a car park in South Grove, close to the High Street.

Fruit and veg seller Mark Buesey, who has worked in the market for 32 years, said: “It will kill off the market and it doesn't make sense when you've already got loads of supermarkets here already.

“This place is dying. We're a few weeks away from Christmas and it's pretty quiet, unlike this time last year.

“There doesn't seem to be much investment or advertisement of the market and we haven't got any Christmas lights down our end like in previous years.”

Frank Pittal has been running a footwear stall in the High Street for 38 years.

He said: “I think I'm among the minority here but I think it's brilliant and I fully support it. A new supermarket will help bring more people here.

“But I'm sad to say but I do agree the market is diminishing, I don't think it will ever go away completely but it could end up being the shortest street market in Europe rather than the longest. Shopping habits are changing but if traders adapt they can survive – for example I've branched out into online sales and it's been very successful.

“I think you have to be positive about things, that's why I've managed to survive here so long.”

David Jacobs, who also sells fruit and veg, has worked at the site for 35 years.

He said: “We'll still keep going. Morrisons will never be able to compete with our prices.

“It does seem unnecessary. We've already got Sainsbury's, Tesco, Asda, Lidl, Iceland, Farm Foods and so on round here, so it's ridiculous really but another one won't make that much difference.”

His colleague John Aken added: “We need another supermarket like we need a hole in the head.

“I don't think it will affect us much but we need shops that will help attract people, something classier like Marks and Spencer. It's a waste of money them building another huge supermarket.”

Click here to follow the Waltham Forest Guardian on Twitter

Click here to follow the Waltham Forest Guardian on Facebook

Comments (7)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

6:43pm Tue 6 Dec 11

Dave mp says...

A Marks & Spencers at the top of the High Street would certainly help envigorate this dying market and give it a new 'lease of life'.
A Marks & Spencers at the top of the High Street would certainly help envigorate this dying market and give it a new 'lease of life'. Dave mp

9:33pm Tue 6 Dec 11

spiknspan says...

We used to have a M&S where Lidl is
We used to have a M&S where Lidl is spiknspan

8:08am Wed 7 Dec 11

Sharlott says...

We need a morrison's instead of Tesco at the Charlie Browns site. When I want to go to Morrison's I have to travel to far, there are to many Tesco's in my area. I prefer the meat range that Morrison's offer, and of coarse the price.
We need a morrison's instead of Tesco at the Charlie Browns site. When I want to go to Morrison's I have to travel to far, there are to many Tesco's in my area. I prefer the meat range that Morrison's offer, and of coarse the price. Sharlott

11:08am Wed 7 Dec 11

mdj says...

I'm sure I'm not the only reader who has written to senior Councillors with positive suggestions about the market, only to receive a disdainful reply - or no reply at all. One wrote back simply to tell me how much he loved Camden market! It seems clear that elements of the Council are happy to see the market dwindle, if not die altogether.
Basic things seem to be wrong: all pitches are apparently charged at the same rate, regardless of how good or bad their location. A recent survey about the market 'consulted' only stallholders, and not us, the people who spend the money!There seems to be no promotion of the market outside the Borough. At the St James end, the excellent recent Turkish supermarket is obviously a deterrent to fruit-and-veg stallholders: so why not promote an arts and crafts section, recruiting people hoping for stalls in Portobello and Camden, highlighting the rapid rail connections from Hampstead and Liverpool St? Is the long malaise visible over many years due to mere lack of imagination, or something more intended?
I'm sure I'm not the only reader who has written to senior Councillors with positive suggestions about the market, only to receive a disdainful reply - or no reply at all. One wrote back simply to tell me how much he loved Camden market! It seems clear that elements of the Council are happy to see the market dwindle, if not die altogether. Basic things seem to be wrong: all pitches are apparently charged at the same rate, regardless of how good or bad their location. A recent survey about the market 'consulted' only stallholders, and not us, the people who spend the money!There seems to be no promotion of the market outside the Borough. At the St James end, the excellent recent Turkish supermarket is obviously a deterrent to fruit-and-veg stallholders: so why not promote an arts and crafts section, recruiting people hoping for stalls in Portobello and Camden, highlighting the rapid rail connections from Hampstead and Liverpool St? Is the long malaise visible over many years due to mere lack of imagination, or something more intended? mdj

11:57am Wed 7 Dec 11

Nairn says...

Having lived in the St James Street area for almost 30 years now I have seen this end of the market in particular become little more than 'a pound a bowl' and mobile phone accessories stalls. Strange as it may seem, not everyone wants to buy a huge bowl of fruit or veg or regularly buy mobile phone accessories. If the council had encouraged market stall holders to maintain a variety of good quality stalls and goods then there would be little need for a supermarket at this end of the High Street. As it is, we DO need one - many of my elderly neighbours cannot walk to Sainsburys and to have a local supermarket within a few minutes walk would certainly help them. Also, look at the public health statistics for this part of Walthamstow - we have a higher rate of poor diet related illnesses than anywhere else in the borough. Surely a decent sized local supermarket would benefit many.
Having lived in the St James Street area for almost 30 years now I have seen this end of the market in particular become little more than 'a pound a bowl' and mobile phone accessories stalls. Strange as it may seem, not everyone wants to buy a huge bowl of fruit or veg or regularly buy mobile phone accessories. If the council had encouraged market stall holders to maintain a variety of good quality stalls and goods then there would be little need for a supermarket at this end of the High Street. As it is, we DO need one - many of my elderly neighbours cannot walk to Sainsburys and to have a local supermarket within a few minutes walk would certainly help them. Also, look at the public health statistics for this part of Walthamstow - we have a higher rate of poor diet related illnesses than anywhere else in the borough. Surely a decent sized local supermarket would benefit many. Nairn

11:14pm Thu 8 Dec 11

demonmaster1977 says...

as far as i am concerned the quicker they kill the market off the better ..
as far as i am concerned the quicker they kill the market off the better .. demonmaster1977

4:41pm Sat 10 Dec 11

malpasc says...

Kill the market off. Walthamstow High Street will never attract quality retailers or higher spending customers whilst that scruffy eyesore is allowed to take over the entire street all day long five days a week. In seven years of living in E17 I haven't once found anything I would purchase from the market.
Kill the market off. Walthamstow High Street will never attract quality retailers or higher spending customers whilst that scruffy eyesore is allowed to take over the entire street all day long five days a week. In seven years of living in E17 I haven't once found anything I would purchase from the market. malpasc

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree