Huge new monthly farmers' market coming to Ipswich
PUBLISHED: 13:00 08 February 2019 | UPDATED: 09:49 11 February 2019
Organiser hopes the Cornhill-based market will attract more footfall to the town centre.
An award-winning businesswoman is set to launch a new event this spring which she hopes will increase footfall in Ipswich, and bring a welcome boost to the spirits of town centre retailers.
Justine Paul of Suffolk Market Events will, on Sunday April 7, officially open the Ipswich Farmers’ Market directly on Cornhill, joined by more than 30 high quality, hand-selected food, drink and craft stallholders.
This is the sixth farmers’ market location for Justine, who has been operating her business since 2008, and she and those with an interest in Ipswich’s retail wellbeing, are confident it will have a positive impact on the town.
“I’ve done a couple of one-off markets with Cathy Frost on the Saints,” Justine says, “and I’ve always stayed in touch with her. She’s been keen to get something going because she’s with Ipswich Vision, and Ipswich Central were quite keen too. Terry Hunt would love for us to get a really good food offering into Ipswich.
“When the Cornhill was being developed they approached us and asked if we’d be interested in having a market. I thought it would be quite a challenge. It’s funny, people have this perception of Ipswich but I’ve always looked at it and thought it could be great. I love the Waterfront and there are parts of the town centre which are fab. It will be brilliant to bring a good quality food market there once a month.
“We’ll be on the Cornhill, right in the centre, so we can use as much room as we like, including street food trucks.”
Justine adds that despite their initial reticence, many towns are now actively seeking unique markets to enhance their offering to visitors.
“It’s really interesting. Over the last eight years I’ve approached towns and said ‘can we bring a market?’ and they’ve always been slightly wary because they worried about the effects on the trading they already had. But actually, there’s been so much talk about high streets dying and the increase of online, and everyone’s talking about having an experience. We’re now being approached by towns asking us for a market to bring people in. We’ve been saying for ages, of course it’s going to do that. Ipswich have been really supportive and they want us to do this. I think it’ll be really really good.”
All traders need to be from within a 50 mile radius (usually much closer) and the markets give shoppers the opportunity to actually talk to the people behind the products.
Already signed up are an oriental dipping sauce company, Mac Street Kitchen who’ll be dishing up warming, gourmet mac and cheese from their converted vintage ambulance, Totham Bangers with rare-breed sausages, Colne Valley Teas and Alex’s Artisan Bakery.
A favourite for visitors should also be Oakes Butchers, who sells out at Justine’s Sudbury Farmers’ Market with her proper, old-fashioned, big cuts of pork, including chunky chops.
The search is still on for traders. If you’d like to be involved, email Justine.
The market takes place from 10am to 2pm on the first Sunday of every month from April 7.