Broadway Market, Hackney

On 8th May 2004, this ancient chartered market in East London was reborn. The market straddles an old drovers path to the City. London Fields was the last common grazing area for livestock before the final leg into town and the market grew alongside. It fell victim to the 1980’s recession.

I went along around midday and the majority of the 40 odd stalls were beginning to run out of stock. The market ran until 5pm but traders erred on the side of caution and seemed surprised by the response. Organic is the order of the day with everything from fruit and veg to that politically correct but tasteless sludge, organic fair trade coffee.

The model for Broadway is the rejuvenated Farmers Market in Stoke Newington and the emphasis is on a mix of fresh food and dairy products. If the market pulls in the punters then there are plans to expand to around 120 stalls including vintage clothing and (whatever this means) USA streetwear.

Not everyone in Hackney is down with the programme. At the Italian cheese stall with its sign saying Italian Cheese pinned to a map of Italy, the guy in front of me insisted in speaking French to the trader.

“I’m sorry I don’t speak French.”
“But you sell cheese?”

The market is on Saturdays from 9am to 5pm. Nearest overland station, London Fields. Tube? Nah mate, this is Hackney, but Bethnal Green is a brisk jog away.