New sustainability market coming to Camden

Camden’s Sustainable Interactive Market will run for 10 weeks from February

Camden’s Sustainable Interactive Market will run for 10 weeks from February - Credit: Camden’s Sustainable Interactive Market

A new open-air, sustainable market has been awarded funding by Camden Council.

The council has pledged £11,000 for Camden’s Sustainable Interactive Market, which will run Monday to Thursday for 10 weeks from February half term at Buck Street Market. 

The project has also secured a donation of £7,200 from Labtech, which owns Camden Market.

It will welcome residents, artists, schools or charities to showcase sustainable products, such as up-cycled clothing, jewellery or art.

To encourage people to trial their products, there is no fee for stallholders, but creators must be residents of Camden. The three most successful stallholders at the end of the 10 weeks will be granted a place at Camden Market for three months.

Mark Hall, who is coordinating the project, said: “The whole idea is to regenerate the high street and make it a destination where things are happening. 

“Empty shops aren't good for morale. People don't browse around like they would normally do because it gets a bit of a strange energy if things are shut down.”

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He said the interactivity of the market is key to attracting visitors. Workshops will demonstrate how to mend or rework clothes and there will be a showcase space for performers. Partnerships with local schools and the charity Little Hands Design will engage children in the sustainability theme.

A stall at a Little Hands Design summer camp

A stall at a Little Hands Design summer camp - Credit: Little Hands Design

Mark said: “With the youth, I see this really inspiring attitude that they have towards fashion right now. They're educated now on how much pollution the fashion industry contributes to global warming.

He said he hopes the market will remove the “stigma” that sustainable fashion needs to be expensive. 

Maggie Milosavljevic, commercial director for markets at Labtech, said: “It is our pleasure to pledge £7,200 to this campaign, to provide free of charge market space, and we are excited to partner with Camden Council on sourcing fresh, new, independent talent and those that are looking to start their own fledgling businesses to add to our vibrant trader community."

Cllr Danny Beales, Camden's cabinet member for investing in communities, culture and an inclusive economy, said: “Even before the impact of the pandemic, our high streets, along with those across the country, were feeling the strain of increased costs, and people’s changing shopping and socialising habits.

“From the projects that came forward for the first funding round, we have selected two impressive bids that both meet the criteria to help make our high streets even more inclusive, sustainable and successful, as well as supporting our Future High Streets’ vision and objectives.

“The projects are still running their campaigns and raising money to reach their targets and I would encourage individuals and organisations to show their support and get involved by donating to a campaign.”

Camden Future High Streets Crowdfund is a council initiative in partnership with civic crowdfunding platform Spacehive, for which the council has set aside up to £36,000. 

Up-cycled clothing, jewellery and art will be among the goods available at Camden's Sustainable Interactive Market

Up-cycled clothing, jewellery and art will be among the goods available at Camden's Sustainable Interactive Market - Credit: Little Hands Design

A further £9,500 has been pledged to Kentish Town-based Town Spot, which promotes business and culture in the NW5 area by interviewing local business owners, creating window displays, and offering a WhatsApp neighbourhood newsletter.

Mike Gyi, founder of Town Spot, said: “Thank you to Camden Council for placing so much faith in Town Spot. I have been plugging away for two to three years at this project and this feels like a big moment of validation and support. However, we only receive the money if we hit our target – so please pledge and spread the word.”

The council is also looking to support a third project by the Sir Hubert Von Herkomer Arts Foundation, which will be launching a campaign to create and design street art on shop shutters in Gospel Oak.

Visit Camden's page at www.spacehive.com/reworkedcamden or email sustainableinteractivemarket@gmail.com to become a stallholder at Camden’s Sustainable Interactive Market.