Shoppers stay away as market reopens
Copyright: Archant 2020
Traders were philosophical in the sunshine as King’s Lynn’s Tuesday market reopened for the first time since lockdown.
But there were few shoppers in town to browse their wares, with most businesses in the centre still closed because of coronavirus and the streets almost deserted.
Markets up and down the country were given the go-ahead to reopen from Monday, provided social distancing could be maintained.
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In recent years, the Tuesday market has dwindled to just a handful of stalls. Sometimes renewable energy guru Kevin Holland from Magdalen has it to himself.
“I love the fact I’ve got company today,” he said. “It’s called the Tuesday Market Place for a reason, this is where the Tuesday market should be.” Traders who usually stand in other areas of the pedestrianised centre were invited to pitch up on the market place in a bid to swell the numbers. Four joined Mr Holland.
“It’s a bit slow,” said Simon Caseley, whose GKM Watches business also trades at Downham Market. “We’re not doing our normal trade but I understand the situation, I’m not moaning, it is what it is.”
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Fishmonger Darren Jelley set off for Lynn from Grimsby at 3.30am. “It’s like everything with the Covid, King’s Lynn was shut down for five weeks,” he said. “I was the only trader for four or five weeks running.” Stephanie Smith has sold cards and gift wrap in Lynn for 15 years. She said: “It’s strange and it’s different but it’s nice to be back outside again after 11 weeks of being stuck indoors.”
Andy and Bev Marvell had brought their collection of garden ornaments from Pinchbeck, near Spalding. The couple were regulars before the pandemic.
“It’s slowly, slowly catchy monkey,” said Mrs Marvell. “Perhaps we could have done with a few more signs around the town.”
Stalls will be back on the Southend Road car park in Hunstanton on Sunday. Traders will be selling ladies and gents clothes, books, stationary, jewellery and hair accessories.
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