The popular Swanage Market has now increased its number of stalls as coronavirus lockdown measures have eased and people feel more confident shopping outdoors, where the risk of transmission of the virus is reduced.
The Swanage Town Council operated market was closed in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 restrictions but was reopened on Friday 15th May 2020 initially with just the one stall run by Bridget’s Fruit and Veg. Now there are a range of stalls including cheese, olives, plants, a deli and Thai food.
Well-spaced out and new queuing measures in operation
Social distancing measures have been introduced, with the stalls in the Main Beach car park off Victoria Avenue, well-spaced out and new queuing measures in operation. To buy fruit and vegetables, there is a one way queuing system that snakes around the produce, allowing people to pick up what they want as they go round and then pay at the end.
The preferred method of payment is contactless card payment but cash is accepted at the market too.
A key visitor attraction and important to many residents
Visitor services manager and business development officer for Swanage Town Council, Culvin Milmer said:
“Swanage Town Council recognises the importance of the Swanage Friday Market as a key visitor attraction and how important it is to many residents. Therefore, we were pleased to be able to bring the running of the market ‘in-house’ after the previous contractors advised us in March 2020 that they were unable to continue to manage the market.
“Due to COVID-19, we are gradually building up the market so that we can ensure it remains as safe for residents as we can possibly make it. Each stall holder is required to produce a detailed risk assessment before gaining approval to trade and we check each stall every week.
“We are looking to develop a ‘crafts and produce’ market and would encourage residents and visitors to see what we have available, as we build up this important asset to the local economy.”
The cheese stall offers a range of produce including relishes
The market is held every Friday at Main Beach Car Park, off Victoria Avenue, between 8 am and roughly 1-3 pm, depending on weather and visitor numbers. Parking is available in the car park.
Swanage Town Council is actively seeking new stall holders. It says that if you are a trader and would like to know more, go to the Swanage Town Council website or phone 01929 766018.