Ambitious plans announced for Old Town arts market

Next month will see the first staging of a Croydon Arts and Crafts Fair in Old Town.

Market stallsApril 19 will see budding William Morrises setting up shop in Exchange Square, the open air arena tucked away behind Surrey Street, with a 10am to 4pm market that is hoped will then be staged on the third Saturday of every month where organisers want to recreate “the buzz” of Camden Market.

The initiative follows the success of the weekly food market staged in Crystal Palace and organised by various community groups, including the local Transition Town team, and it comes shortly after Croydon Council appointing a dedicated market manager for Surrey Street.

The organisers are appealling for artists and crafts traders to book themselves in to bring their wares to the people of Croydon. “We hope that with your regular participation, it becomes a success and traders benefit from the enormous amount of footfall that central Croydon shopping precinct has, as we aim to promote and market the event so as much of that footfall is driven towards the square,” they say.

The location boasts the Pump House building, once the engine room of the Surrey Waterworks. “There is enormous potential to make this event as popular as Merton Abbey Mills market used to be and we will aim high to capture some of the buzz of Greenwich and even Camden markets.”

They continue: “All we ask of you as a potential stallholder is enthusiasm, commitment to the events, appropriate merchandise for arts and crafts and during these formative months, your own table and table coverings. We would like the fair to be as professional-looking as possible but initially we are reliant on your own efforts to help in this.”

Pitch costs are yet to be determined (“We will make it affordable to encourage participation”).

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