Edinburgh would certainly benefit from having a well-managed indoor market and with the closure of the Tron now would be a good time for the council to see what buildings they have that might be suitable.
I know from speaking to the council over King’s Stables Road that they would like to see an indoor market that was open if not every day at least five days a week. There were thoughts of using the KSR site temporarily and adding street food traders outside.
I say well managed because there would certainly need to be a better feel than just that of a general market. While not a market as such, a huge opportunity was lost with The Arches when they opened on East Market Street.
Instead of having a theme of, say, vintage – with clothing, furniture, collectables and music – it was just rented out on an individual basis and therefore ended up with a mixture of food outlets, offices and shops.
I walk by regularly and even during the Festival and at Christmas a third of the units were closed. It’s not the fault of the individual businesses who operate at times that suit them but it is certainly not the quirky and edgy shopping experience it was touted to be. Consequently several businesses have already come and gone and there really needs to be a major rethink if The Arches are ever going to be a shopping destination.
With The Arches, a dozen units or so was always going to be fairly niche if it was to have a theme but there is a chance for Edinburgh to have a large indoor market that would be a major attraction.
The Tron Kirk was always a little bit too small, especially if a café was to be included and a larger building could have different themed aisles which include the arts but don’t exclude others too.
Whether the council can make such a building available I don’t know, but it would need to run on the basis that an indoor market was a good thing for Edinburgh to have and therefore commercial consideration would only be one factor.
READ MORE: Kevin Buckle: Support your local high street
As we all know so well, if you leave any space in central Edinburgh to the free market it will end up as a tartan tat shop or a café.
What is so frustrating with Edinburgh council is that they will say they need to take a few thousand extra on a shop they own but then spend or waste, depending on your viewpoint, many times that on projects that are less beneficial.
Dante release folky inferno of music and art
Friday saw the release of a new album from indie folk band Dante and this is probably a little more folky than some, though it will certainly appeal to fans of Admiral Fallow and Frightened Rabbit too.
If you are quick, there is a very limited bundle of I Wear Your Weight With Mine with coloured vinyl, CD, download and a limited edition collection of short stories by Dante’s Stephen Thom. Artwork is by Tracy Maurice (who was behind Arcade Fire’s Funeral and Neon Bible).
You can order the album at wearedante.bandcamp.com.