Romford Market set to continue on Sundays after ‘popular’ trial, council reveals

PUBLISHED: 17:03 23 October 2020

People strolling up and down the stalls at Romford's Sunday Market in July during the trial. Picture: Ken Mears

People strolling up and down the stalls at Romford's Sunday Market in July during the trial. Picture: Ken Mears

Ken Mears Photography

Romford’s Sunday Market is set to continue after a trial proved “very popular” with residents, Havering Council has said.

The authority launched the initiative in July once the market had reopened following the end of lockdown.

Council leader Damian White said it is now proposing to continue with Sunday market trading, subject to consultation with a traders’ representative and a further review in March.

“The introduction of the Romford Sunday Market has been very popular with our residents,” he added.

“We have recorded healthy and positive footfall figures within Romford town centre, providing a much-needed boost to the local economy.”

Weekly statistics published by the council ending September 20 show that footfall was higher in South Street and the market on every Sunday since the trial started on July 19, compared to the corresponding Sundays in 2019.

On one Sunday, August 30, the increase was as high as around 75 per cent.

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Caron Webb, who has been trading on Sundays at her baby and childrenswear stall Storky, said: “It’s been OK. It’s another day of money for us so we can’t complain.

“It’s a different type of customer which is nice because we’re seeing different people.

“We used to have coachloads of people at Christmas come from Suffolk, Margate, all over the place. A recent Sunday was that type of vibe. I had one couple from Clacton, another couple from Margate and they were really pleased with it.”

She has run the stall for 23 years and said she is “born and bred Romford Market” - her grandmother Nellie Sims, who has a road named after her in the town centre, was involved with it too.

Caron said: “I am 100 per cent for the market, I would do anything to support the market and help it out.”

The move to add Sunday market trading in the town followed the demise of Dagenham Sunday Market.

The River Road market in Dagenham had closed in March due to lockdown but was unable to re-open and its permanent closure was announced in June.

At the time of the Romford trial launch in July, more than 20 former Dagenham traders had signed up for Romford’s Sunday offering.

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