New Satur­day morn­ing mar­ket launches in city


The founder of a new Satur­day morn­ing mar­ket be­lieves there is plenty of room in Palmer­ston North for mul­ti­ple mar­kets.

The Royal Mar­ket launched on Satur­day morn­ing in the UCOL car park and its man­ager Brian Lit­tle said it would cater to a niche au­di­ence.

Lit­tle said he was happy with stall­holder in­ter­est, but the new mar­ket would likely start slowly.

The fo­cus would be on ven­dors sell­ing their crafts, art, cloth­ing and home­made food prod­ucts, and ‘‘garage sale’’ type stalls. There would also be hot food and a smaller num­ber of fruit and veg­etable stalls.

Lit­tle said he was anx­ious about his mar­ket be­ing per­ceived as com­pe­ti­tion to the lon­grun­ning Al­bert St Mar­ket and hoped his ven­ture would draw dif­fer­ent types of stalls.

‘‘I hope the cus­tomers will con­tinue to go and get their fruit and veges from Al­bert St, and then will de­cide to go and have a look at the other one, and then ev­ery­one wins.’’

Al­bert Street Mar­ket man­ager Tony Trainor did not wish to com­ment on the new ven­ture, but it is un­der­stood some ven­dors from Al­bert St planned to shift to the Royal Mar­ket.

Lit­tle said he ini­tially had planned for the mar­ket to be held on Sun­day af­ter he heard ru­mours of the Sun­day Clover­lea mar­ket clos­ing.

How­ever, Clover­lea Mar­ket owner op­er­a­tor Maruna Engu said while the Clover­lea Tav­ern had sold, the mar­ket was shift­ing, not clos­ing.

It would op­er­ate in the Clover­lea car park un­til it could shift to one of two undis­closed lo­ca­tions pro­posed by Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil.

Engu wel­comed the Royal Mar­ket as an­other op­por­tu­nity for lo­cal pro­duc­ers and for hy­per­local shop­ping.

How­ever, he said the city coun­cil should or­gan­ise co-op­er­a­tion and co-or­di­na­tion be­tween the dif­fer­ent week­end mar­kets.

‘‘I just heard about it [ on Fri­day]. There’s no con­sul­ta­tion... so of course that’s go­ing to cause con­flict,’’ he said.

Mayor Grant Smith said past at­tempts to bring mar­ket stall­hold­ers and op­er­a­tors to­gether had been tried about a year ago, but had failed.

But, ul­ti­mately, this was not coun­cil’s re­spon­si­bil­ity, he said.

The new mar­ket is on Satur­days from 7am to 1pm.

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