Residents and visitors enjoyed visiting an open air craft market on Saturday, held on the recently pedestrianised area of Fleet Road, between Branksomewood Road and Church Road.
All traders were local craftspeople who had previously had stalls at the monthly Hart of Craft market, held in the Hart Shopping Centre, and had not been able to trade for many months because of the Government regulations involving indoor markets.
The 17 stalls provided a safe, socially distanced space for visitors to enjoy shopping in the open air, whilst at the same time supporting local traders, both in the market and beyond.
The event was well attended and received. Linda Ahronson from Fleet said:
“We went to the market and also into the shopping centre, bought items from both a stallholder and a shop. I wouldn’t have gone into town today if the craft market hadn’t been there - so it’s a win for permanent shops too.”
Steven Sawyer from Fleet added: “Great to see something positive happen in the high street, can’t wait to see lots more of this.”
Commenting on the event Councillor Graham Cockarill, Cabinet Member for Place, said:
“It was great to see so many people out walking and enjoying the fresh air whilst at the same time supporting local traders, shops and restaurants.
The pedestrianised space will enable us to maintain social distancing and safety guidelines and to make the centre more attractive for visitors.”
The event, managed by Fleet BID and Fleet Town Council, is just one of the initiatives planned for the newly-created, pedestrianised space and a further craft market is planned for 12 September between 10am and 3pm.
Further information and FAQs on the pedestrianisation scheme can be found on Hart District Council’s website: https://www.hart.gov.uk/COVID-19-Fleet-Road
Information on future events can found on the Find Your Fleet website: https://findyourfleet.org/fleet-road-events-and-activities