WANTAGE MARKETS : A TREAT OF TRADERS

Up and about early, and in all weathers throughout the year, bringing us lovely fresh produce including fruit & veg, bread & cakes, fish, flowers, eggs, meat and more. We love our regular market traders and the Farmers market folk who join us once a month.

Wantage has a long history of market trading, initially on Saturdays, then adding Wednesdays during the nineteenth century. This from 'Rural Life in the Vale of the White Horse' (Nigel Hammond):

Wantage market was held on Saturdays when meat, poultry, butter, cheese and vegetables were offered for sale. But from 1845 a sample corn market was pitched each Wednesday, and although the Saturday market continued to flourish, the mid-week occasion gradually came to be the day when farmers met to strike bargains and chat over the state of agriculture.

Whilst the products on offer, have varied over time the importance of the market remains key to the town.

"Markets are a major part of the history of towns in the United Kingdom... and represent the heart of our communities."

A recently published national 'Manifesto for Markets' by The National Association of British Market Authorities and the National Market Traders Federation – see https://www.mission4markets.uk - set out their importance to towns in general and to their communities, and helps explain why, as a town team, we believe Wantage markets are so valuable. The case they made included:

  • 'retail and wholesale markets play a key part in local economies, jobs and growth.'
  • 'the important roles played by markets and small businesses in maintaining the vitality of town centres by nurturing and sustaining independent businesses.'
  • 'markets often provide an opportunity for entrepreneurs, and especially young entrepreneurs, to take a first step on the business ladder in a low-risk way, and to develop their business ideas to help the economy grow.'
Interested in trying a market stall for yourself?

If you are at an early stage with market trading or a first-timer, Wantage can offer support in terms of online promotion and making stalls available to borrow free for 3 months. The pitch rates are very reasonable, more details and terms here.

If you’re an established market trader in another town or towns that would like to try Wantage, or a local supplier who'd like to test a market pitch, or even a school or college that would like to join the growing national movement for 'teenage markets' and similar, we'd love to hear from you.

Contact wantageclerk@btconnect.com for further information about booking a pitch and connect with the Town Team's Wantage Markets Facebook page.

Wantage has markets each Wednesday and Saturday. The Farmer's Market attend on the last Saturday of the month, and continental markets join us on additional dates. Trading times are 9am-3pm. The Farmer's Market & the Wednesday fish stall usually finish around 1pm.