1. The rise and fall and rise again of Queen’s Crescent Market?
Regular readers will know how much we love Queen’s Crescent Market, and so we’re pleased to report that finally, an ambitious new manager has taken over the only street market in NW5, and one of the oldest in London to boot.
And we’re pleased to hear Sima Awad has big plans, which began with a free trading day last weekend. “The aim was to attract new traders and footfall,” she says. “It was put together quite quickly as a trial but was very successful – seven new traders and four have since applied to become regulars.”
The good news? The relaunch proper – “with all the bells and whistles,” says Sima – is on Thursday 23rd May.
Thursday? Okaaay, but in the meantime head down there to enjoy the new stalls appearing each week. We were away last weekend, alas, but heard particularly good reports about new Top Dog stall, which serves “highest quality British sausages in a gloriously fluffy hotdog bun”.Says founder Mike: “My business partner Chris is a Kentishtowner through and through. Born and raised round the corner from QC, he remembers when the market was a vibrant and bustling hub. we love all the food establishments that have been appearing recently in Kentish Town; the composite parts are all there and it’s clear that QC can be turned around to become as busy, if not more so, than a couple of decades ago.”
So how did their first day go? “Not knowing what to expect, we thought perhaps it’d be very quiet and we wouldn’t sell much, but we’d cleaned out our stock by 3pm. We’ll be back this Saturday and hope become a weekly fixture at QC.”
For the sweet-toothed, an inevitable (and delicious-looking) brownie stall has also popped up. The Brownie Bar began when “three sisters decided to venture out and experiment with their cooking skills.” Perfect for a Saturday morning hangover, me thinks.And elsewhere on Queen’s Crescent, more encouraging news: a new antique, retro and art shop has opened on its eastern end. Owned by the very dapper Matt Townsend, brother of Map Cafe founder Chris, the quite spacious outlet is already rammed with a bohemian selection of pieces from vintage mirrors to vases, Edwardian tea sets and original paintings.
So people, support not only these newcomers but also the regulars who’ve long battled this horrendous weather. Let’s celebrate Queen’s Crescent’s wonderful heritage – and now, we hope, promising future.
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