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Free stalls as Local Producers and Crafts Market launches in Maidstone

No charge for pitches between June and September to help stalls get up and running; starts this Saturday

Maidstone Market is to get a boost with a new once a month Local Producers and Craft Market launching this Saturday, June 12. The new market will be run in the current market hall at Lockmeadow and will specialise in featuring local producers and crafts people to sell and share their products to existing market-goers.  The market supports the ‘Love Your Local’ campaign and aims to attract new audiences to shop there. 

Mayor of Maidstone Cllr Fay Gooch, who will be attending the launch of the Local Producers and Craft Market says: “I am delighted to see this new initiative being introduced at Maidstone Market. The past 12 months or so have proved how important our local producers are to our communities and the Local Producers and Craft Market is a perfect opportunity for us all to show our support by shopping there.

“Markets have changed through the years and audiences are looking for more authentic shopping experiences from local makers, which this will provide.  It is another great example of how Maidstone is open for business and I look forward to seeing as many people as possible there this Saturday.” 

Mayor of Maidstone Cllr Fay Gooch

Maidstone Borough Council (MBC) runs the markets and is offering free stalls to new producers and crafters from June – September to help get it established.

MBC market manager Jeff Robinson comments: “We are looking forward to launching this new element to the existing market. It will have its own home in the market hall and we are looking forward to welcoming new stall holders and offering free stalls to new producers and crafters between June-September.

“If anyone has rekindled their crafts/hobbies during lockdown and are looking to try selling them in person, please get in touch, this new market could be the perfect platform. 

“We still have a very loyal following at the existing market, but as with markets across the UK, footfall has declined and we want to bolster the existing market, while bringing something fresh and exciting to attract new audiences.” 

The launch will be held on June 12 from 9am-2pm and will feature face painters, food stalls and music from the Lew Lewis Trio. The market will run every second Saturday from then on. 

For anyone who would like to enquire about taking an introductory free pitch at the market, please contact Jeff Robinson on jeffrobinson@maidstone.gov.uk 

The market has also had a redesign of brand to bring it up to date and freshen its image. To keep up to date with information, you can follow Maidstone Market on Facebook. To find out more information about Maidstone Markets please go to the www.maidstonemarket website.

A necklace from Checiegirl Creations and an example of some of the delights served up by Doorstops Delivery

Please note: All the illustrations with this story have been provided by current market stall holders. We are grateful for their assistance. A little more about them…

Checiegirl Creations is run by Nathifa Simon. She has a website – https://checiegirl.wixsite.com/checiegirl-art 

Roughway Farm is a family farm in Plaxtol. The farm sells a range of delicious farm fresh produce such as: cherries, raspberries, apples and the highly-prized Kent Cobnut. Since 2014, the farm has run a growing online farm shop where people can order fresh fruit boxes to their door. Tom, who runs the diversification element, has produced a range of apple juices, cobnut Dukkah, chocolates, granola, jams and other foodie delights.  https://roughwayfarm.co.uk/shop/     

Doorstops Delivery: Is a small Maidstone-based business which prides itself in selling freshly-made pastries, cakes, buffets, savouries, afternoon teas, chocolate goodies and celebration cakes, all made to order and delivered to your door or work place. Website: www.doorstopsdelivery.co.uk or phone 07305334344.

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David Buckley

Dave Buckley is a career journalist. “I once went painting girders for a week and discovered I didn’t like heights,” he says. “Apart from that it has always been journalism for me in one form or another.” Past local weekly publications he has worked for include: the South-East London Mercury* covering the Borough of Greenwich as a junior reporter; Orpington-based News Shopper as a sub-editor; and the Kent Messenger when based in Larkfield, Maidstone, as deputy chief sub-editor. He has also worked for the following dailies/nationals: Daily Express, Today*, News of the World* and Hong Kong Star*. All those marked with an asterisk no longer exist (trend emerging?). He owned and edited a Thailand-based property magazine before returning to England and currently works as a production editor on a car fleet magazine. His first foray into property ownership saw him move from London to Rainham (the Gillingham, Kent, variety). He has subsequently lived in Chislehurst, Petts Wood and Orpington in the Borough of Bromley (which he still regards as being in Kent). In more recent years he owned three different properties on the Kings Hill (West Malling) development.

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