New Spitalfields, Billingsgate and Smithfields markets will relocate to Dagenham
PUBLISHED: 14:29 25 April 2019 | UPDATED: 17:30 25 April 2019
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Three historical and world renowned markets are to move to Dagenham.
Billingsgate, New Spitalfields, and Smithfields will move to a 42-acre site in Barking Reach, it has been revealed today by City of London Corporation (CLC), which manages the markets.
Catherine McGuinness, policy chair at CLC, said: “The City's three world-leading wholesale food markets at Billingsgate, New Spitalfields and Smithfield have been serving our citizens for hundreds of years, and we are committed to their future for London.
“In order to secure their continued success, and after careful consideration of a number of options, Barking Reach has today been agreed as the preferred site for consolidating the City Corporation's wholesale markets.
“We intend to use this new site to offer more modern facilities and space for traders to grow so that they can continue to support the capital's food economy.
“We will soon be launching a public consultation on our preferred option. As part of this process, we will continue to engage with market tenants, traders and their customers, and other key stakeholders across London.
“Our number one priority is to maintain a top-quality market environment serving London.”
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Welcoming the move, which will require approval from Parliament, Barking and Dagenham Council leader, Darren Rodwell, said: “This is fantastic.
“We have been working on this for three years and managed to beat six other boroughs to show the real home of London's markets will be Barking and Dagenham in the 21st century.”
He said the competition between the boroughs had been friendly, but that everyone wanted to win putting Barking and Dagenham's success down to three years of hard work.
“This is not just about what this does for us today, but where it takes us tomorrow,” he said.
The move could bring up to 3,500 jobs with plans for a cultural centre forming part of the winning bid.
Last month a council spokesman confirmed the town hall was in talks with the City of London Corporation (CLC), who manage the markets, about a possible relocation to the borough.
With a predicted combined turnover of around £800million, the markets would naturally bring wider economic benefits to the borough, including direct financial contributions in the form of business rates which would see around £500,000 retained by the authority.
The borough has beaten off sites in Redbridge, Newham, Waltham Forest, and Thurrock in Essex, to be picked by CLC.