The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has been announced as the preferred place for the relocation of three well-known markets currently based in central London.
Last week the City of London Corporation (CLC), which manages Smithfield, Billingsgate and New Spitalfields markets, shared the news they will move to a 42-acre site in Barking Reach in Dagenham.
Plans were announced last August that the historic markets would consolidate and relocate to a new site. Currently meat market Smithfield is based in Farringdon, fish market Billingsgate is in Poplar and horticultural market New Spitalfields is found in Leyton.
Council leader, Councillor Darren Rodwell, said it was “fantastic news” for the borough and added: “We all know London is moving east and Barking and Dagenham is on the up.
“Billingsgate, Smithfield and New Spitalfields are all world-renowned markets. They deserve a first-class location. Barking once boasted the largest fishing fleet in the world until the late 19th century. It is therefore fitting that London’s main fishing market is coming home.
"Our aspiration today is to bring jobs to the borough, train the butchers, fishmongers and market gardeners of tomorrow, and take every opportunity to secure a new retail and educational offer as part of the regeneration of the Roding riverside area."
Catherine McGuinness, policy chair at the City of London Corporation, said: “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.”
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