OUT in all weathers and always on hand to help, Vicky MacDonald does it all for the love of her brainchild social enterprise Edinburgh Markets. Stalls of all kinds set up their weekend wares on dinky covered tables and include crafts, speciality soaps, jewellery, snacks, fruit, vegetables, meat, clothing and cosmetics, to mention a few. Currently trading on Saturdays from 10am to 3pm for now, in August the stalls will be open on both Saturdays and Sundays from 11am until 6.45pm during a Festival Market. A Christmas market operates in December from the 1st to the 23rd.
Set at the bottom of Leith Street, in front of St. Mary’s Cathedral, between Little King Street and Cathedral Lane, the Market attracts the attention of the huge number of people who pass by from up the Walk, Broughton and surrounding areas. There’s a lot of footfall and the market is becoming an established weekend attraction as people stop and browse, buy, snack and chat, before going on about their business uptown.
‘The traders give each other a lot of support and my goal of getting local people more involved in their area is starting to show results,’ says Vicky. ’I know that a lot of this goes on in Leith already and I want to bring some of that Leith flavour up here. I hope that Leithers will support our market and get involved here themselves. ’
An event organiser before branching out on her own with a First Port government funded grant last March, Vicky is able to guide and support new traders, some of whom include college graduates wanting to start their own businesses or others who have been made redundant. “We are interested in helping start-ups and business incubators,” says Vicky,. Her pitches also attract more experienced traders who bring quality goods like meat from Ayreshire, fruit and vegetables from Macmerry and bread from the Borders. Edinburgh Markets is not just about profit, some of the return is ploughed into community work in Edinburgh. “We want to support organisations that work with young people and those who work with the homeless,” says Vicky.
You can find out more at www.edinburghmarkets.co.uk and contact Vicky about taking a stall yourself at firstname.lastname@example.org There is also a Facebook page Edinburgh Markets.