A belief in the market

Yesterday afternoon, I decided to take a stroll into Brownhills to check out the latest incarnation of Brownhills Market, this time by market operators LSD promotions, who also run the Bescot Sunday Market in Walsall. There had been excellent reports from readers and in the local press, and I wasn’t disappointed. At the relatively late hour of 2pm, cars were queueing park and the market itself was back up to full size, occupying the same space as it did in the old Spook Erection days.

When Walsall Council first tried to resurrect the event, it was clear from the outset that it was doomed; the pitches were dead, the layout was poor and the public showed little interest. I struggled to get behind the thing, but it was clear that it would take organisers who believed in what they were doing and had some experience if the thing was ever going to fly again. Walsall Council’s catalogue of errors and amateurish management was never really going to cut the mustard, and they knew it.

I suspect that the market may have image problems for some time to come, and it may be difficult managing expectations...

I was initially quite sceptical when I saw the plans to raise the market from the dead again, and I’m still unclear as to the motivation behind it, but it’s nice to see the authority acknowledge their previous abject failure and pass the baton on to someone with a clue. LSD have clearly worked hard to get a variety of traders – from Jewellery to sweets, from meat to motor accessories. Clothes stalls were present in number, as were fast food vans and a variety of specialist traders. There were a couple of empty pitches, but in a more logical layout, these didn’t seem so bad. Whats more, there were people. Loads of them – Brownhillians were out in force. Compare the photos below with the first of the council markets a year ago; there’s no comparison. If the momentum can be maintained, Brownhills market can be good again.

Pottering off down the High Street, I noticed that is was crowded for a Saturday. LSD Promotions have not only shown that running a market can make all the difference to Brownhills, they’ve shown that Walsall Council hadn’t a clue. Here was my town, usually moribund on a Saturday afternoon, thronging with people. And not a dodgy DVD in sight…

A large market returns to Brownhills - clearly run by people who know what they're doing.

Compare this scene of with that of the Council operated market a few posts ago

I didn't get there until mid-afternoon, but it was still busy, and folk did seem to be spending.

There were a couple of empty pitches, but nothing like as bad as previously. The weather helped, but this seemed well run and managed.

A large, varied assortment of traders were in attendance, including clothing, food, jewellery and even driveway surfacing...

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4 Responses to A belief in the market

  1. Nick says:

    Thats brill…! A pat on the back to LSD… 🙂

  2. Paul says:

    You are bang on here Bob. Brownhills Market was buzzing on Saturday as was the high street. Well done LSD Promotions for giving us a taste of how the market used to be years ago.

    Long may it continue.

    Shame on the council for messing it up in the first place last year.

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  4. ann marie says:

    We trade with LSD, and have been with them approx 3 years now , they are very fair, friendly and helpful , they are passionate about what they do and seem determined to make brownhills market work ;o)
    As a trader I have to say that we have struggled, bad weather has dogged the beginning of this market which has put traders and customers off, BUT this has the potential to be a great market, when the market opened there was a fantastic range of stalls to get your teeth into just as a market should be , once the weathr improves im sure the traders will return ,including ourselves weekly rther than every few weeks but We need more public support though, come on Brownhills, you have a fab new market, operated by people that are professional and actually care about what they are doing .Its a circle, no traders=no people,no people=no traders, we want Brownhills to work but we need support to help us along ;o)

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