Continental Saturday market set for Leith
dozenS of traders are to set out their stalls at a new continental-style Saturday market being launched in Leith.
Founders of the popular Stockbridge Market say they want to help revitalise Leith after shop closures blamed on the tram works and create a “pleasant alternative” to huge supermarkets.
More than 30 traders have already signed up, but organisers hope to double that number as its reputation grows.
Edinburgh’s best-known publican Mary Moriarty, former landlady at the Port O’Leith bar, will officially open the new market on Saturday, with entertainment from a traditional Scottish piper.
Based on the Stockbridge and the Grassmarket ventures, the outdoor market at Dock Place will include food and local arts and crafts.
The market, which has been two years in the planning, is the brainchild of married couple Beth Berry and husband of 23 years Jean Francois Toulouze – known as Jeff – of the French Connection Creperie.
The pair manage the Stockbridge and Grassmarket markets with the help of a ten-strong team including their daughter Susan Berry.
Beth said: “We live on this side of town and we love Leith. Quite a few businesses had to close down due to the tram works and we hope this is going to boost footfall in the area.
“We also want to inject a bit of street life into the area. We hope this is every bit as successful as Stockbridge.
“Some businesses [in Stockbridge] have even changed their opening hours on Sundays so they can benefit from the increased trade.”
Beth said the Leith market has already been well-received by local groups and would be the same size as the Stockbridge venture.
The Leith Market will run on Saturdays from 10am until 5pm, the same time as the Grassmarket market.
The Stockbridge Market, which will celebrate its fourth birthday in September, runs from 10pm until 5pm on a Sunday.
Stallholders at Leith will include Casa Roble and staff from Capital-based French artisan bakery Au Gourmand.
Also among them will be organic artisan producers from Peelham Farm, near Eyemouth in Berwickshire, who have been with the Stockbridge market since it was formed.
Managing partner Denise Walton said: “We are really looking forward to it. Markets like this are a real growth area for us. I think it’s eclectic and that’s what attracts people. It provides something for everybody.”
Beth added: “It’s a better experience than your supermarket because you can discuss what you’re buying – if it’s food you can taste it, if it’s jewellery you can talk to the person who made it.”