Well Street market in Hackney seeks public support

29 July 2016

Well Street Market is one of 20 locally initiated crowdfunding campaigns to receive a pledge from the Mayor of London in Round 3 of our Civic Crowdfunding pilot.

This means that if the campaign can raise all of the rest of the total project budget from 'the crowd', the Mayor will donate £20,000 and it can become a reality. The deadline for this fundraising is 16th August 2016.

Kay Richardson of Well Street Traders and Residents Association (WESTRA) explains more...

Tell us about your organisation and its key aims

We are Well Street Traders and Residents Association (WESTRA), a group of residents and local businesses based on Well Street in E9. Well Street is between London Fields and Victoria Park, next to the new Hackney Fashion Hub.  

Well Street historically had a thriving market. It was the home of the first ever Tesco, which began as a market stall on Well Street Market in 1919. Sadly, the market has declined in recent years. It is our mission to bring back Well Street Market in a new and innovative way.

What is your project, why is it important and how will it help people in your area? 

Well Street Market will be more than a market. It will offer a much needed community hub, provide training and nurture local talent. We want this market to reinvigorate the local area, increase footfall, support its community by offering pathways into work, and celebrate our wonderfully diverse community. We want Well Street to be a street to be proud of and be part of,

There are five aspects to our plan for Well Street Market. We surveyed local people and businesses who told us they want a Saturday market offering local produce. Based on this, we firstly plan to establish a local produce market where residents can get affordable healthy food.

Secondly, we will introduce a Teenage Market, (an idea backed by Mary Portas), which will provide 10 free stalls to local teens from local schools and estates. This will offer a free platform to develop and nurture young entrepreneurial talent, helping people into work.

Thirdly, we will support local creatives, offer training programmes, and have a Student Makers Market linked to London College of Fashion. We want Well Street to be known as a place to get design pieces unobtainable elsewhere.  

Fourthly, there will be a live music stage where residents will be able to perform and book slots. We also aim to pay for an associated programme of music mentoring.

Finally, we are collaborating with the World Bee Project and crowdfunding for beehives to eventually produce local honey.

What’s your best experience of the Mayor’s crowdfunding pilot been so far?

Going to the live event at City Hall to pitch for the Mayor of London's pledge. It was completely terrifying but totally worth the stress and pressure because we came away with the highest possible pledge available, £20,000.

The difference this has made in my community has been overwhelming. Sadiq Khan's stamp of approval has given us a much needed boost and we are hugely grateful. Now we have to ensure we raise the rest of the start-up costs to realise the project.

Why, when and how should people pledge to you? 

Well Street is an area of high deprivation. Homerton and Wick wards, in the market area, are some of the most deprived wards in the UK on all the recognised poverty indicators. There are at least seven social housing estates surrounding the market area.

We are committed to improving the lives of all of those in our community and keen to use our market to develop talent in our neighbourhood and bring people together. 

People should pledge to bring back a historic market that wants to transform our part of Hackney and make it a creative force that brings together communities, provides pathways into work and develops and nurtures talent.

It's important to pledge today as the more interest we generate, the more momentum builds for the campaign. It's an all-or-nothing campaign so if we don't reach our target then we won't receive a penny. 

Is there anything specific you need in-kind? 

We would like donations of sound equipment for our live music stage, street furniture for public seating and dining areas, and flower seeds, soil, compost and planters for our bee project. 

Do you have any public events or media appearances coming up?

Come along to our pledge party on Thursday 4th August at Well Street Pizza where they will be selling a 'Well Street Market Pizza' in support of our campaign!

We are also staging Well Street Market Against Racism on Saturday 6th August with HOPE not hate. The event will be an East End street party to celebrate the rich diversity of London life. Music, dancing, bunting, food and stalls will come together, reflecting the amazing multicultural life of London’s residents. 

Two Music Stages will host local bands and DJs, and a full road closure will mean no traffic on the day so plenty of space for a good old knees-up. Visit the Facebook event page for more updates.

Are there any other ways people can meet you face-to-face or help you?

Make sure you are following our Well Street Market on Facebook as we have regular events and get in touch via [email protected]

LDN gov | Well Street Market

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