Monday, 11 February 2008

Camden Market

It was with real regret and sadness that I saw the news on television over this last weekend about the fire at Camden market.

What really astonished me was that, other than a comment from Boris Johnson MP (a hopeful in the upcoming Mayoral campaign in London), it was difficult to find any real comment on the disaster that must have occurred to a large number of small businesses. There was plenty of coverage of the damage to the neighbouring public house - but even with that coverage it didn't really focus on the damage to the business but merely introduced the idea that minor celebrities chose to drink there on occasions.

Camden market is iconic - it is not at all glamorous, but has stuck to its own particular marketing strategy with huge success over a large number of years. It is in an area that is not especially prosperous and brings in large numbers of people from across Greater London and way beyond to sample their special brand of market trading. What self-respecting twenty-first century hippy would not shop at Camden? This is a real example of where SME retailers make a visible difference to a locale.

Let us hope that the London Borough of Camden and the Greater London Authority, ensure that the many small businesses that are affected are supported during this period of disaster and that the market is able to begin trading again in the short term.

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