Dagenham Market offers £500 for couple to tie the knot on television
PUBLISHED: 12:00 27 December 2018
Dagenham Sunday Market is offering £500 to a brave couple willing to be married or blessed on national television.
Stallholders in River Road, Barking will be beamed into the nation’s living rooms as part of a BBC documentary about Sundays.
Ahead of the programme airing next year, managers want to put on a televised talent show on January 13 featuring songs, dance and other delights.
They are looking for two lovers to tie the knot for the grand finale — and will stump up cash for the chosen couple.
The event, explained Frank Nash, director of Charfleets Group, who run the market, aimed at giving shoppers “a little bit of a lift”.
“We’re basically looking for people who can sing, tell jokes or dance — anything really,” he told the Post.
“You never know, it could be someone’s big break.”
Frank, 58, added that the show, jokingly dubbed Dagenham Market’s Got Talent, served to encourage punters to support local traders.
“It’s a bit of an experiment,” he went on.
“When everyone migrates to the internet what can we do to get them out of their bedrooms, and not sit at their computers buying from Amazon or whatever it is.”
Last week this newspaper reported stallholders at Barking Market were feeling the pinch ahead of Christmas.
Online retail giants were taking a big bite out of their businesses, traders complained, a growing issue that has led some to seek work elsewhere.
The issue has even become the subject of a big-budget festive advertising campaign by a credit and debit card company, featuring high street shopkeepers singing along to Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You.
With figures released last month showing nearly a fifth of the UK’s retail spending happening online, the documentary will show the impact of changing consumer behaviour on the borough’s traders, according to Frank.
“I mean markets are at the bottom of the, if you like, food chain. I’m not sure that’s the right word,” he said.
“Everyone talks about the high street. They don’t talk about the smaller, independent retailers, and how it’s affected them.”