Dagenham Sunday Market traders to relocate to Romford

Romford Market. Picture: Ken Mears

Romford Market. Picture: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

More than 20 Dagenham Sunday Market traders are relocating to Romford as it trials an extra day of opening.

The popular River Road market closed in March due to the lockdown but was unable to re-open.

In a letter to traders last month, Frank Nash and Kevin Kelly from owners Charfleets said: “It has become clear the Dagenham Sunday Market in its present form does not allow social distancing to be maintained.”

And now some of the much-loved market stalls will be selling their wares in nearby Romford on Sundays instead as part of a pilot scheme.

The market will open on Sundays from this weekend (July 19) as part of a trial launched by Havering Council.

A council spokesperson said the initiative comes after the “successful” reopening of the market following the lifting of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

The trial begins on Sunday, July 19 and will also see new stalls to shop at.

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The council said a survey of market shoppers found more than 80 per cent were in favour of it opening on Sundays.

Council leader Damian White said: “Romford Market is the jewel in the crown for Romford, so I am excited that we can open this historic location on Sundays.

“Given its outdoor setting and the already successful social distancing measures we have put in place, Romford Market is the perfect place for people to continue to shop locally and support small businesses, whilst staying safe and Covid-secure.

“The new Sunday opening hours will make it easier for shoppers to visit the market in their free time, providing a much-needed boost to both existing and new traders, as well as the surrounding shops and venues.”

Romford Market, which is normally open on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, has had safety and social distancing measures such as two metre paint markers in place since its post-lockdown reopening.

Clothing, toys, gadgets, sweets and furniture are among the items that can be bought there, as well as street cuisine for people to enjoy.

The council also recently announced all of its car parks - including Havering Town Hall and Angel Way which are near to the market site - and on-street parking bays will be free on Sundays from August 9.

It said the trial is set to last for two months.